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Dec 10, 2007

More companies focus on preventing staph infections

Employers are beginning to react to the new health risk posed by antibiotic-resistant staph infections, a hazard that has spread beyond hospitals into schools and now workplace environments.
•This fall, an employee in the office of the Will County circuit clerk's office in Joliet, Ill., contracted a case of antibiotic-resistant staph. County health department spokesman Vic Reato says his agency disinfected the facility. "There's a very acute fear, which is why they elected to do a more thorough cleaning, to make the employees feel more comfortable," Reato says.
•Two correctional officers with the California prison system developed staph infections last year, prompting the creation of a work group that is looking at new procedures to help prevent infectious skin conditions such as staph infections among prison workers and inmates.
Several organizations that consult on health-prevention services say they're seeing a surge in calls from businesses wanting to know how to reduce risks associated with antibiotic-resistant staph, or MRSA. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently posted information on its website (
cdc.gov) about MRSA in the workplace.