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Exposure Risks to Community-Associated Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA)

The indoor environmental quality professionals at Clark Seif Clark provide testing and consulting services to identify and help prevent the spread of microbial pathogens in health care environments and the greater community.

Chatsworth, CA – WEBWIRE

Education as an initial step goes a long way towards demystifying what is often a distressing issue.

The first recorded nosocomial outbreak of Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in the United States occurred in 1968 in Boston, Massachusetts. This infection was traditionally associated with hospitalization or other health care-associated risk factors, but this is no longer the case.

MRSA is a type of staph bacteria that can be found on some people’s skin or in their nose. For those who develop an infection, it is resistant to many antibiotics. In recent years, health care providers have observed MRSA infections in an increasing number of people who lack traditional health care-associated risk factors. These people appear to have community-associated (CA) infections.

According to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), CA-MRSA infections are defined as infections in people with no history of the following risk factors within the year prior to the MRSA culture date: 
•    Hospitalization or surgery
•    Permanent indwelling catheters or percutaneous medical devices
•    Residence in a long-term care facility
•    Dialysis
•    MRSA culture less than 48 hours after hospital admission

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports the infectious bacteria is usually spread in the community by contact with infected people or things that are carrying the bacteria. Anyone can get MRSA and the risk increases with activities or places that involve crowding, skin-to-skin contact, and shared equipment or supplies. Aside from medical patients already receiving care that were the traditional populations considered at risk; athletes, daycare and school students, inmates, and military personnel in barracks are considered to be at higher risk of developing CA-MRSA.

“When addressing CA-MRSA it is important to start with education,” said Derrick A. Denis, Vice President of Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) for Clark Seif Clark (CSC). “Education as an initial step goes a long way towards demystifying what is often a distressing issue. People are calmed and can make sound decisions when they understand the ubiquity of Staphylococcus aureus and the MRSA strain. They are also personally empowered to reduce the incidence of infections by learning to practice good personal hygiene and basic wound care. Institutions are comforted knowing they have the power to proactively protect occupants with regular cleaning and effective disinfection of their buildings and equipment.” 

The IEQ professionals at CSC provide this form of environmental education along with consulting and testing for MRSA and many other superbugs. Proactive education and prevention can reduce the frequency and severity of incidents of MRSA, but inevitably there will be infections that warrant a response from employers and/or property managers. When this occurs, CSC develops quick and concise responses to reported infections to address both the anxieties and the tangible issues related to pathogens. As an educational resource, CSC also recently sponsored a video about CA-MRSA that can be seen at:

To learn more about this or other microbial, environmental, industrial hygiene, indoor air quality, health and safety services, please visit, email or call (800) 807-1118.

About Clark Seif Clark
CSC was established in 1989 to help clients in both public and private sectors address indoor air quality, occupational, environmental, and health and safety (EH&S) issues.  CSC is a leading provider of these services with multiple offices along the western seaboard and southwest. The company believes in science-based protocols and has a strong background in engineering, making them the preferred environmental consultants to industrial clients, healthcare facilities, architects, schools, builders, contractors, developers and real estate professionals.

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 Infection Control

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