Does anyone know...

  1. 0
    I am a student nurse on a clinical rotation, and was given a 73 year old on contact isolation for MRSA. The client vomitted 5 times within a period of 2 hours. I noticed that the in-house nurses were avoiding to come in and help me when this was going on. Even the client doctor did not want to stay in the room when she was called in and my clinical instructor avoided me all day. Also, my clinical instructor made a comment about not being able to get a nursing position if one is tested positive with MRSA. Now I am concerned if I am infected. Does anyone know how easy one can contact this bacteria and what should I do to find out?

    Get the hottest topics every week!

    Subscribe to our free Nursing Insights newsletter.

  2. 10 Comments...

  3. 0
    The MRSA patients are on isolation for a reason, to protect caregivers and visitors who go into the room. As long as you are following proper contact precautions (gown and gloves) and thouroughly washing your hands after you leave the room, you should be fine. MRSA is not just in hospitals anymore. More and more people out in the community have it and many healthcare workers are actually colonized with it. Just be mindful of basic hand hygeine along with the iso precautions and you will be fine
  4. 3
    If you adhered to the required PPE (personal protection equipment) and practiced appropriate handwashing, chances of you getting MRSA the pt on precautions is slim to none.

    However, if you are the average college student, you have a notable risk of getting from sharing class desks, participating in sports, working out in a gym, showering in communal facilities, sharing a BR with roommates, buying food at the grocery store, etc.

    And in 19 years of working in hospital, I personally have only known of one situation where healthcare workers were tested for MRSA. Seven pts that had a particular surgery all got MRSA in the wound - the disease was tracked to the surgeon.

    Recently a close friend that works in a major university health clinic, had all the sore throat cases that came in cultured. A huge number of these young people came up positive for MRSA. I suspect that if healthcare workers screened out all MRSA carriers from working, they would not have enough to staff facilities safely.
    scoochy, Rabid Response, and Altra like this.
  5. 2
    MRSA isn't leprosy. If you cultured the noses of all the staff nurses I would bet better than half of them would be colonized with MRSA. We live in a kind of "don't ask-don't tell" culture when it comes to nurses with MRSA. As to why you were getting the cold shoulder from the rest of the staff- contact isolation is a hassle. Gowning, gloving, maybe mask- it's necessary, but a hassle. I wouldn't worry too much about it. If you are concerned you can talk to your personal doc about getting cultured, but that isn't going to tell you much. What would they culture? And if positive,there isn't any way to be sure when or where you may have picked up MRSA. In hospitals I'm aware of, no MRSA screening is done as part of the hireing process.
    Rabid Response and syckRN like this.
  6. 2
    I think mainly people avoid helping in the isolation rooms because it is a hassle to gown up! MRSA is everywhere, and although I certainly don't know everything, I have personally not heard of any place screening for MRSA prior to hiring. If you were positive, they would put you on abx.

    As a nurse, you work with so many people who have so many different contagious infections, you don't typically think twice about that aspect of it. I'm not concerned about getting infected...if I do, I do, but I'm healthy and I follow proper precautions, so my chances are pretty good that I won't.

    The reason I wouldn't go help in an isolation room is that no one asked for assistance, and it's a hassle to gown up to go in just to see if you need assistance. It's not like you can just pop in and offer a hand like you can in a non-isolation room. So you have to be a little more aggressive in requesting help.
    Rabid Response and syckRN like this.
  7. 10
    I recently cared for an asymptomatic MRSA+ contact precautions pt who was discharged 2 hrs later and on his way to the elevator saw me at the nurses station and came over to thank me and gave me a huge hug. Then he gets in the elevator full of people, presses Floor 1 and goes about his life.
    Do you see the big picture here?
    merlee, ObtundedRN, ChristineN, and 7 others like this.
  8. 1
    Thank you BluegrassRN, Caroladybelle, suanna, PatricksRnMommy
    syckRN likes this.
  9. 0
    some nurses become germaphobes (sp?) and just the thought of the word MRSA gives them the willies, as long as you do the precautions you'll be fine, and NOONE has a MRSA screening for employment
  10. 4
    You are more protected in that room because of using PPE then you are in the room next door of the patient who is unknowingly MRSA positive and therefore you aren't using PPE. That's why good handwashing is important.
  11. 0
    I live in a community where we have an epidemic of "Community acquired MRSA." We don't even isolate MRSA patients (unless they have it in their does happen and often fatal). We DO place them on contact precautions. And I agree with the "don't ask, don't tell" philosophy. No doubt I would culture positive from a nasal swab.


Nursing Jobs in every specialty and state. Visit today and Create Job Alerts, Manage Your Resume, and Apply for Jobs.

A Big Thank You To Our Sponsors