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Understanding Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus

Author(s): by Mary Pat Bolton, MA, RD, LD

Sources of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MSRA)

MRSA is a serious cause of infections in hospitals and long–term care facilities, primarily affecting patients with weakened immune systems and those who have had recent surgeries or other medical procedures. These infections are referred to as hospital-associated MRSA (HA–MRSA) to distinguish them from infections caused by newer strains of S. aureus that originate in community settings. Community-associated MRSA (CA–MRSA) developed in the 1990s, often striking healthy people with no history of surgery or hospitalization. CA–MRSA is often passed among people who have close skin–to–skin contact such as athletes.