Staph infections and the colonization of this bacteria have grown over the years to the extend that more than a quarter of the US population has it. This has been growing since 1974 at a steady pace and the problem isn’t that the bacteria exists, but that it is becoming very resistant to modern treatment methods. MRSA, which is tremendously difficult to kill when it sets in, has a tremendous economic cost that can drain resources fast.
Statistics About Staph Infections
1. The number of deaths per year that are reported to be of a staph infection: 19,000.
2. The number of infections directly related to MRSA in the United States: 90,000
3. In a 2003-04 study, approximately 29% of the US population was colonized with staph.
4. The percentage of staph infections that turn out to be MRSA: 2%.
5. In the last decade, the cost of treating staph infections has become a $45 billion per year industry.
6. The percentage of hospital patients who contract a staph infection: 5%.
7. In 2005, MRSA cost the healthcare system up to an extra $9.7 billion.
8. Every year in the EU over 4 million patients acquire a healthcare-acquired infection.
9. About 20–30% of healthcare-associated infections are considered to be preventable by intensive hygiene and control programs.
10. Stringent infection controls lowered MRSA rates in the ICU by 62% over a 2.5 year period in a 2011 study of staph infections.
11. A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed a 28% decline in hospital-associated MRSA infections between 2005 and 2008.
12. It is estimated that 2% of the human population is a carrier for MRSA, often without any symptoms or an infection that is present.
13. Germ-killing soaps and ointments used in ICUs reduced cases of MRSA by 40%.
14. The majority of staph and MRSA infections occur in hospitals or other health care settings.
15. Long-term antibiotic use and living in an assisted living environment, such as a nursing home, are known risk factors for staph infections.
16. The average stay in the hospital for a staph infection: 5 days.
17. It costs $6,400 to treat someone with a staph infection when compared to a typical hospital stay where an infection doesn’t develop.
18. Staph infections account for 1 out of every 5 hospital contracted infections that occur.
19. 12% of MRSA infections are now community-associated.
20. Roughly 50% of people report recurring MRSA infections that won’t go away.
21. MRSA can also change over time and mutate from one strain to another.
22. In 2003, there were an estimated 12 million doctor or emergency room visits for skin and soft tissue infections in the United States.
23. Hospitals in England have seen a 548% increase in MRSA related deaths from 2003 to 2004!
24. Approximately 20% of bloodstream infections in hospitals are now caused by Staph bacteria.
25. The percentage of hospital-associated bacterial infections in ICUs in 2003: 64%.
26. More urinary tract infections than wound infections are found in post-surgical care today, which accounts for some of the drop in staph infection rates over the years.
How Do You Get a Staph Infection
Most people carry staph bacteria in their nose and don’t even realize it. It is even possible to carry MRSA and not have an symptoms, though this is a much rarer occurrence. The good news is that MRSA infections are declining, even if the prevalence of colonization has been going up in the general population. This means that treatment protocols are working and the results are encouraging to the bottom line of many health care communities.
The goal of any staph infection is to catch it quickly and 75% of the costs of doing so are carried by US taxpayers and nationalized health care programs around the world. The reason why early detection is necessary is because there are more deaths that come about because of staph infections and invasive MRSA than there are of HIV today. As long as an infection is appropriately treated, the facts and statistics show that most people who are in reasonably good health can recover almost all of the time.
Signs and Symptoms
Staph infections can occur in a number of ways, but for the most part they are not serious. It is when the infection goes deeper than the skin that problems can begin occurring.
With 1 in 3 people having active colonies of staph on their bodies, it is extremely important to make sure that personal items are not shared. This means having individual towels, not sharing clothing, and other seemingly innocent choices need to become common place to continue reducing the levels of staph that are being seen. Staph fully believes that sharing is caring, so just don’t do it.
Stopping staph infections also means every health care professional should take extra time to provide a completely sanitary environment. Just one look at the numbers of staph infections that were eliminated by simple hand washing techniques shows that the modern health care provider is taking shortcuts on patient care. It takes 20-30 seconds to properly wash hands. In return, staph infections can be cut down by almost half. That’s an important statistic.
It is also important to make sure antibiotics are being taken only when absolutely necessary to prevent further resistances from developing, especially in the staph population. These colonies that are resistant to modern treatment methods might not be as dangerous to the young and healthy as they are to the senior community, but any abuse of antibiotics affects everyone. Good stewardship programs of this medication are essential so that harmful bacteria can be effectively eliminated while new antibiotics are researched and tested.
Unless a specific person is responsible for an outbreak of infections, healthy carriers are not going to be treated to remove a colony. This means it is up to each person to maintain good hygiene practices so that staph infections do not occur.