Universal MRSA/Staphylococcal Decolonization for Hospitalized Patients

  • Edward J. Septimus


Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) remains an important public health threat. MRSA is one of the most important common causes of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) in most hospitals. 47.9% of Staphylococcus aureus HAIs are due to MRSA. In addition, MRSA infections can result in substantial morbidity and mortality and lead it increase costs and length of stay. Both targeted decolonization, i.e. decolonization only patients identified to carry MRSA with chlorhexidine (CHG) bathing and intranasal mupirocin, and universal decolonization i.e. decolonize all high risk patients with CHG with or without mupirocin, have demonstrated decrease cross-transmission and infection with MRSA. Recent trials have shown that universal decolonization in adult and pediatric intensive care units (ICUs) have resulted in greater reduction of MRSA infections compared to targeted decolonization. Evidence for universal decolonization with CHG bathing in non-critical care is unresolved.


Decolonization Methicillin resistance Staphylococcus aureus Healthcare-associated infections Mupirocin Chlorhexidine Active surveillance testing Vertical versus horizontal approaches 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Infection Prevention and EpidemiologyClinical Services Group, HCANashvilleUSA
  2. 2.Internal MedicineTexas A&M Health Science Center College of MedicineHoustonUSA

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