Staph infections are caused by staphylococcus bacteria, a type of germ that is commonly
found on the skin or in the nose of even healthy people. Most of the time, these bacteria cause
no problems or result in relatively minor skin infections. But staph infections can turn deadly if
the bacteria make their way deeper into the body, entering your bloodstream, joints, bones, lungs
or heart. Patients that are staying in a hospital are susceptible to staph infections.
Most staph germs are spread by skin-to-skin contact. A doctor, nurse, or even visitors
may have staph germs on their body and then spread them to a patient in the hospital. According
to the National Institutes of Health (2012), this can happen when a person develops a staph
infection at home and brings this germ to the hospital, or when a doctor, nurse, other health care
provider, or visitor touches a patient who has a staph infection. If the person then touches
another patient without washing their hands first, the staph germs may spread. Some other risk
factors for developing a staph infection are:
Being in a hospital or other type of care facility for a long time
Having a weakened immune system
Injecting illegal drugs
Being on kidney dialysis
Having an invasive medical device in for long periods of time
(National Library of Medicine, 2012)
There are many forms of a staph infection and they all can be deadly if they invade our
bodies. The CDC state (2012), a strain called C. difficile has been linked to 14,000 American
deaths each year. MRSA is another strain of a staph infection that was once labeled the flesh
eating disease. “Invasive MRSA infections that began in the hospitals declined 28% from 2005 through 2008” (CDC, 2011). The drop in deaths is due to the preventions that each hospital puts into place.
To prevent staph infections hospitals need to establish a prevention plan. This plan should include all of the following:
Clean their hands with soap and water or...