MRSA Study Slashes Deadly Infections in Sickest Hospital Patients

Dr. Mary K. HaydenUsing germ-killing soap and ointment on all intensive care unit patients can reduce bloodstream infections by up to 44 percent and significantly reduce the presence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in ICUs, according study results published in today’s New England Journal of Medicine.

The REDUCE MRSA trial, funded by the Department of Health and Human Services, was conducted in two stages from 2009-2011. It tested three MRSA prevention strategies and found that using germ-killing soap and ointment on all ICU patients was more effective than other strategies.

“The strategy that proved to be most effective was perhaps the most straightforward: All patients were bathed daily with chlorhexidine antiseptic soap for the duration of their ICU stay and all received mupirocin antibiotic ointment applied in the nose for five days,” said Dr. Mary K. Hayden, associate professor of infectious diseases and pathology at Rush University Medical Center, and one of the co-authors of the study.

Read the entire news release.

Rush Doctors Honored by March of Dimes

Dr. Howard Strassner

Dr. Howard T. Strassner, Jr., chairman of obstetrics and gynecology and director of maternal fetal medicine, and Dr. Werner A. Meier, former co-director of the perinatal center, Rush University Medical Center, were awarded the  2010 Salk Health Leadership Awards by the March of Dimes for their exceptional leadership and outstanding contributions to improving premature and infant health.   

Both experts are among only five elite Illinois healthcare leaders, and the only two physicians being honored this year. Strassner will receive the physician award and Meier will be given the lifetime achievement award.   

Dr. Werner Meier

The March of Dimes Jonas Salk Health Leadership Awards, which were established in 1998, are given to health care leaders who show exemplary leadership in maternal and infant health care management, nursing, medicine, research, and public health and community.  

Nominees must have made significant contributions or have shown excellent leadership in one or more areas of delivery of high-quality health care, health care education, community services, biomedical or health services research, and advocacy.  

The March of Dimes Health Leadership Awards are named in honor of Dr. Jonas Salk, who developed the polio vaccine with funding and support from the March of Dimes.  

Read the full news release.