CDC launches MRSA prevention campaign

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched a national education campaign to help parents prevent drug-resistant staph infections in children. The goal of the National MRSA Education Initiative is to help Americans better recognize and prevent MRSA skin infections. The campaign targets Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a bacteria spread through direct contact and personal items that is resistant to certain antibiotics and can cause severe infections.

The Initiative includes consumer educational materials, Web sites for parents and health care providers, and brochures and other materials that will be shared with community and school groups. CDC estimates that Americans make more than 12 million doctor visits per year for skin infections caused by staph bacteria, including MRSA. To prevent MRSA in children, CDC recommends parents encourage good hand washing and hygiene and teach the signs and symptoms of infection, among other measures. (SOURCES: AHA News Now , www.ahanews.com, September 8, 2008; CDC Web site review (http://www.cdc.gov/mrsa/mrsa_initiative/skin_infection/index.html).)