MRSA Information in Canada
Risk of MRSA
- According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, people with weakened immune systems or who are chronically ill are more at risk of contracting bacteria than healthy people. Unfortunately, Canadian hospitals and health care facilities are where outbreaks of MRSA infection are most common.
- Since Staph bacteria, including MRSA, is found on the skin, the infection is spread by human contact. A person can be a carrier of MRSA and not be sick themselves, but still spread the infection, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada. MRSA can be spread by touching an object that has the infection on it or through an open wound.
- Symptoms of MRSA are the same as any other Staph bacteria. The wound will be red and inflamed and, in more advanced cases, can include fever and headaches. If MRSA is left untreated, the infection can cause pneumonia or toxic shock syndrome, according to Canadian Center for Occupational Health and Safety. Death can even occur if medical attention is not sought.
- Since MRSA is resistant to methicillin antibiotic, another antibiotic will be used to treat the infection, according to Public Health Agency of Canada. Early diagnosis is important, though. The longer the infection goes untreated, the harder it is to treat and the more it spreads.
- One way to avoid infection is by washing your hands regularly or using a hand sanitizer, according to Public Health Agency of Canada. Any cuts should be kept clean and covered to lower the risk of infection. Also stay away from other people's wounds or bandages.
Canada's Increase of MRSA
- According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, Canada has seen an increase in MRSA cases because the screening is more sophisticated now than in the past. Hospitals regularly screen for the infection and, because of the increased screening, more cases of MRSA are being found. Also the method of diagnosis is quicker, so more people are being diagnosed early.
Canadian Government Involvement
- The Public Health Agency of Canada has teamed with the Community Healthcare Infections Control Association of Canada and Canadian Patient Safety Institute to teach a module about reducing the incidences of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics in health care settings. The agencies' hope is by educating health care workers about the infection, fewer outbreaks of MRSA will occur, according to Public Health Agency of Canada.