MRSA is a frightening type of staph bacteria, since it is one of the "superbugs," or bacteria that cause severe infections that are resistant to traditional antibiotics.
- Wash your hands! As in any setting, to prevent MRSA in the workplace, it is important to wash your hands thoroughly and effectively. Use warm water and soap, lathering up to your elbows for 30 seconds. It may sound like overkill, but it's a way to stay healthy!
- Use hand sanitizer. If you are unable to wash your hands frequently, use an alcohol-based gel hand sanitizer to kill germs. It is generally a better idea to wash your hands, but if you can't get to water and soap, a hand sanitizer will work just fine.
- Clean any shared workspaces. To prevent MRSA in the workplace, make sure that any common tools or supplies are cleaned regularly with an antibacterial cleaner. Shared surfaces can get contaminated easily and can spread many types of germs, including MRSA.
- Be careful in the office bathroom. Unless you know for a fact that everyone in your office washes their hands thoroughly after using the bathroom, take some minor precautions. Try to use a paper towel or tissue to touch faucets, doorknobs, and handles.
- Beware of the gym. If you are lucky enough to have a gym or exercise room at work, beware of the exercise equipment! To prevent MRSA, wipe off the equipment before using it as well as afterward, to get rid of the warm moist environment that MRSA thrives in.
- Educate employees. If you would like to prevent MRSA in the workplace, make sure that the employees in your office are well aware of how MRSA is spread and what can be done to combat it.
- Have ample supplies. Even if the entire staff understands how to prevent MRSA in the workplace, it is not going to be helpful if the bathroom is out of soap or paper towels! There should always be enough soap, tissues, paper towels, hand sanitizer, and antibacterial cleaner in stock.
- Use common sense. Don't borrow personal items such as lip balm or tweezers from a colleague, and never touch other employee's wounds! (Gross!)
Preventing MRSA in the workplace is a team effort, but not difficult. With a little education, you can make your office an MRSA-unfriendly haven!