Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)

Statutory notification alert

Public health management

Important information\

  • Infectious agent: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
  • Transmission: Person to person by direct contact with another person with a purulent lesion or purulent discharge or from a person with asymptomatic carriage (colonisation). Auto infection is also common.
  • Incubation period: Variable.
  • Infectious period: As long as purulent lesions continue to drain or the carrier state persists.

Case exclusion: See recommended exclusion for healthcare workers in Guidelines for the Screening and Management of MRSA in Healthcare Workers (exernal site). Healthcare facility patients colonised or infected with MRSA should be managed in a single room with dedicated bathroom facilities as per the Guidelines for the Screening and Management of Multi-resistant Organisms in Healthcare Facilities (PDF 841KB).

  • Contact exclusion: Do not exclude.
  • Treatment: Antibiotic treatment for clinical infections as recommended by the doctor.
  • Immunisation: None available.
  • Case follow-up: Is conducted by hospitals, public health units and the Communicable Disease Control Directorate, as required.

Public health action

Information for GPs and other healthcare providers 

Management in Healthcare facilities

Notifiable disease data and reports

MRSA is a notifiable condition via laboratory notification in WA. *The Gram-positive Typing Laboratory PathWest LMWA works in collaboration with the Antimicrobial Resistance Infectious Diseases Research (AMR-ID) Laboratory, Murdoch University to undertake further molecular typing and characterisation of isolates.. MRSA surveillance data are therefore reported separately to other notifiable disease data. The latest  Western Australian Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) Epidemiology and Typing Report 2022-2023 (PDF 1.5MB).

Last reviewed: 15-11-2023
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