Objective: To estimate the frequency of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) nasal carriage in employees of a tertiary care hospital.
Study design: Descriptive cross-sectional study
Place and Duration of Study: This descriptive cross-sectional study was carried out in Lahore General Hospital, Lahore during October, 2015 – January 2016.The samples were processed according to standard operating procedures at Microbiological laboratory of Post Graduate Medical Institute, Lahore.
Materials and Methods: Nasal swabs were collected from three hundred and eighty healthcare personnel working in various clinical wards of Lahore General Hospital, Lahore. Preliminary identification of Staphylococcus aureus was done by observing colony morphology and mannitol fermentation on mannitol salt agar, Gram stain and catalase test. Further biochemical test, DNase, was applied for the confirmation of the organism. The phenotypic resistance to methicillin was determined using Cefoxitin disk 30 µg according to CLSI guidelines.
Results: Out of 380 nasal samples, 89 (23.42%) cultures yielded the growth of S. aureus out of which 31 (34.83%) were MRSA. The overall frequency of MRSA among all the HCWs was 8.15%. The MRSA carriage was more in males (9.7%). Age group of 50 years and above had the highest number of carriers (12.34%). The working category most affected was the paramedic staff (12.50%). The highest number of MRSA carrier HCWs were working in the Pediatrics department (15.15%).
Conclusion: The results of our study emphasize the need for the formulation of effective infection control policies within the healthcare setupsKeywords: Staphylococcus aureus, MRSA, Nasal carriage, Hospital employees/ healthcare workers