Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)
Staphylococcus aureus (often shortened to Staph aureus) is a common bacterium (germ) which is found on the skin or in the nose of about a third of the population. Many normal healthy people have Staph aureus on their skin without even knowing it is there. This is quite normal and does not mean that you are ill.
MRSA is a type of Staph aureus which is resistant to the more commonly used antibiotics.
Statement of compliance with MRSA screening
In line with Department of Health guidelines on MRSA screening, East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust are compliant with the requirement to screen all adult patients admitted to the Trust (both elective and emergency) for MRSA, other than maternity and some patients undergoing minor procedures, by 31st December 2010.
East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust
New MRSA Screening Policy
This policy describes the measures for the control of MRSA within East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust. It provides information in relation to the modes of transmission and the risks of infection with MRSA to enable healthcare workers to advise staff, patients and visitors accordingly.
What is the difference between colonisation and infection?
Much media interest about MRSA in the UK has resulted in misconceptions amongst the general public. Clear distinction should be made between MRSA colonisation (i.e. symptomless carriage of MRSA) and MRSA infection.
MRSA is found on the skin (including wounds) or nose or throat; there are no clinical signs of infection or disease.
Most patients with MRSA are colonised rather than infected.
There are clinical signs and symptoms of infection (e.g. temperature, redness, swelling) or MRSA has been isolated from an internal sterile body site e.g. bone or joint.
Vulnerable patients undergoing invasive procedures such as operations are at risk of developing infection from any of the germs on the skin. The symptoms of an infection with MRSA are the same as other germs.
Vulnerable patients including those undergoing invasive procedures will be routinely monitored for potential signs of infection which may include a temperature, cellulitis (spreading redness around a wound) or the presence of pus.