MRSA/Staph Infection

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         GISD continues to be proactive in addressing the issue of staph infections.  Staphylococcus aureus, or staph, is a common germ that many people carry in their nasal passages or on their skin with no ill effects.  Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a type of staph that has developed antibiotic resistance (certain antibiotics are unable to kill the bacteria). 

          Staph infections begin abruptly. Symptoms may include a large area of redness on the skin, swelling and pain, followed by a pustule, abscess, boil or carbuncle (red, lumpy sores filled with pus).  If left untreated, staph can infect blood and bones, causing severe illness that requires hospitalization.

     How do I get MRSA and how is it spread?

    *  Any activity that causes a break in the skin.

    *  Any injury, poor health, using or sharing dirty items.

    *  MRSA can spread among people having close contact with people who already have MRSA.  .

    *  It is spread by direct physical contact such as touching objects (sheets, clothes, towels, dirty 

       dressings, workout areas, and sports equipment). 

    How Can I stop the spread of infections?

    *  Encourage frequent hand washing with soap and warm water.

    *  Use alcohol hand gel (in all GISD classrooms) when soap and water are not available..

    *  Encourage students to keep their fingernails clean and clipped short.

    *  Avoid contact with other people’s infections or anything contaminated by an infection.

    *  Avoid sharing personal items such as razors, towels, deodorant, make-up, or soap that directly

       touches the body.

    *  Clean and disinfect objects (such as gym and sports equipment) before use.

    *  Wash dirty clothes, linens, and towels with hot water and laundry detergent. Using a hot dryer.

       rather than air-drying also helps kill bacteria

    *  Encourage students who participate in contact sports to shower immediately after each practice,

       game, or match.

    Keep open or draining sores and lesions clean and covered. Anyone assisting with infection    

       care should wear gloves and wash their hands with soap and water Before and After bandage

       changes.

          We encourage you to be observant of signs and symptoms of staph infection. If you or any family members have any of the symptoms described above, you are encouraged to contact your family doctor.

          The Texas Department of State Health Services has provided guidelines and procedures to assist you with the prevention and spread of MRSA.  Additional information which includes pictures about staph and MRSA can be found at http://www.mrsaTexas.org/.  Please contact your school nurse if you have questions.

      

     

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