Chicago—While methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections are decreasing in hospitals, that is not the case in the broader community, according to a report published recently in the journal Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology. The research, led by infectious disease specialists at the University of Chicago, report that current or former drug use is a strong predictor for acquiring the leading strain of MRSA. For the study, researchers looked at 1,015 cases of Staphylococcus aureus bacterial bloodstream infections (BSI) over a 6-year period at a Chicago “safety net” hospital, finding that more than half of hospital-acquired cases were due to the USA 300 strain. While efforts have been successful in reducing the healthcare-acquired infections, study authors call for enhanced prevention efforts, especially with vulnerable communities such as drug users, to stem the spread of invasive MRSA infections.

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