MRSA question

  1. I'm a nursing student and not very familiar with the normal hospital protocols. I had a patient last week who was on MRSA precautions, but she had MRSA 7 years ago (not currently). Regardless, her chart on the computer popped up with MRSA precaution, and I had to use contact precautions when treating her. After a dx with MRSA once, is a patient continuously on contact precautions just in case? I thought MRSA was eventually kicked with the proper antibiotics and am confused about as to why patients are still on contact precautions years later. Thank you!!
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   EmmaG
    Because it's possible she is colonized with MRSA. Many facilities will place these patients on isolation until they've returned a number of negative surveillance cultures over a set period of time.
  4. by   NurseLatteDNP
    Our hospital puts anyone who has had MRSA in the past on contact precautions for lifetime.
  5. by   Fiona59
    Hey, our system automatically gives a nurse who is a patient a private room. They just assume that we're a risk until the cultures come back.

    MRSA is out in the community. So you never know who will test postive.
  6. by   HeartsOpenWide
    They should just put every one on contact precautions until otherwise R/O
  7. by   EmmaG
    Quote from Fiona59
    Hey, our system automatically gives a nurse who is a patient a private room. They just assume that we're a risk until the cultures come back.
    And here I thought it was a perk for working so hard. Silly me

    Do they put them on isolation too?
  8. by   rjflyn
    MRSA is the HIV of the 2000's, it will be something else for the 2010's no doubt.

    Each facility has it's own way of dealing with the issue. Shoot in our ER our doctors don't even agree on how to treat the "spider bites" which are 99.9% of the time MRSA abscesses if we were to culture them, we typically don't. They get I&D, some will get antibiotics, some don't depends on the PA/doctor combo on that day. On the two day recheck the few that are not improving get antibiotics then.

    rj
  9. by   swee2000
    My hospital's policy requires any patient with a hx of MRSA to be automatically placed in (resistant contact) isolaton until medically cleared via cultures. If & once the cultures come back negative, the isolation precautions are discontinued.

    I had this exact situation this week, in fact. On Monday, one of my patients was in isolation b/o past MRSA infections. Tuesday, my off day, the results of her cultures came back showing she was negative for any current infections. Today when I returned to work, she was out of isolation.

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