Community-associated meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus carriage in hospitalized patients in tropical northern Australia

L Brennan, Rachael Gorie, Allen Cheng, Philip Giffard, Bart Currie, Steven Tong

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15 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Community-associated meticillin-resistant . Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) was first reported in remote Australian Aboriginal communities. It is a prominent clinical pathogen in northern Australia with potential for transmission within the local hospital setting.

Aim: To determine epidemiological characteristics of . S. aureus carriage within the Royal Darwin Hospital.

Methods: We screened two patient groups: an 'admission group' recruited within 48 h of admission; and an 'inpatient group' recruited five or more days after admission. . S. aureus isolates were characterized by antibiotic susceptibility testing and genotyped by a multi-locus sequence type-based high-resolution melting scheme.

Findings: S. aureus carriage on admission was 30.7% of 225 compared with 34.8% among 201 inpatients, with MRSA carriage of 2.2% and 18.9% respectively. We isolated CA-MRSA from 0.9% and 10.4%, and healthcare-associated (HCA)-MRSA from 1.3% and 9.0% of the admission and inpatient groups, respectively. Among the inpatient group, hospital-associated ST239 was the most common MRSA strain. CA-MRSA was represented by one clonal complex (CC) in the admission group (CC5) and seven CCs in the inpatient group (CC1, 93, 5, 6, 30, 75, 88).

Inpatient carriage of multiple CA-MRSA lineages suggests selection for and transmission within the hospital of not only typical HCA-MRSA, but also diverse CA-MRSA strains. � 2012 The Healthcare Infection Society.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-211
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Hospital Infection
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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