MRSA in Nares- contact precautioned?


  1. Should we treat MRSA + nares as contact precaution patients?

    • Absolutely! Better safe than sorry
    • No: nares cultures are limited
    • Maybe: I strictly follow my facility guidelines
    • 0
      Maybe: only for some specialties
    • 0
      Other: add comments

5 members have participated

If a patient tests positive for MRSA in the nares, do we treat them like we do all patients placed upon contact precautions?

I was taught that terminal cleaning was required and that personnel should be (1.) notified, and (2.) given appropriate PPE. My facility and director say that "we treat ALL patients like they are contact precautions" (we do not). Thoughts?

jeckrn, BSN, RN

1,868 Posts

Specializes in EMT, ER, Homehealth, OR. Has 17 years experience.

Most healthcare workers would be positive for MRSA if their nares were cultured.

MunoRN, RN

8,058 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 10 years experience.

MRSA screens look for colonization, not infection, which are two very different things. Whether or not a facility uses contact isolation precautions for colonization as well as active infection varies, and in my experience it's about 50/50 between those isolate for colonization vs isolating only for active infection.

Editorial Team / Admin

Rose_Queen, BSN, MSN, RN

6 Articles; 11,337 Posts

Specializes in OR, Nursing Professional Development. Has 18 years experience.

We follow isolation policy for MRSA in the nares. Anyone who is admitted the day of surgery for a surgery that will require ICU postop is tested several days prior. All other patients are tested on admission to ICU. We also test all patients who are admitted from a long term care facility.


107 Posts

We used to do contact precautions for this at my facility, but they changed it in the last two years.