(HealthDay News) – Community-associated strains of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA), commonly found in hospitals, are common in nursing homes, according to a study published in the March issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.

Noting that most nursing home residents are admitted directly from hospitals, where the prevalence of CA-MRSA is high, Courtney R. Murphy, PhD, from the University of California in Irvine, and colleagues assessed the prevalence CA-MRSA in 22 nursing homes in Orange County, CA.

The researchers found that CA-MRSA was present in 20 nursing homes. Of the 24% of swabs that were MRSA positive, 25% were positive for CA-MRSA. After adjusting for a number of variables, carriage of CA-MRSA was predicted by a higher percentage of Hispanic residents (odds ratio, 1.2) and a higher percentage of residents <65 years of age (odds ratio, 1.2).

“In this regional study, we found that CA-MRSA prevalence was highly variable, with nearly half of residents in one facility identified as CA-MRSA carriers,” Murphy and colleagues conclude. “CA-MRSA carriage was associated with facility-level characteristics, such as a high prevalence of residents <65 years old or of Hispanic ethnicity.”

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