Study: Overcrowding, understaffing raise MRSA rates in hospitals

A new study by Australian researchers found that MRSA rates in hospitals tend to be higher when staffing is low and hospitals are crowded. The study, conducted by the University of Queensland, notes that many countries--including the U.S.--have become stressed by cuts in inpatient beds and higher outpatient volumes. With nursing shortages worsening, staffing has become a problematic issue. Given these conditions, nurses, doctors and other hospital staff members are less likely to engage in simple anti-MRSA measures like washing their hands, researchers note. They say that given the extent to which MRSA rates can be affected by resource constraints, it's critical to study further how those constraints aid in MRSA transmission, and to develop strategies to fight MRSA even under resource-constrained conditions.

To learn more about the study:
- read this HealthDay News article

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