Roanoke College is taking extra precautions and urging the campus community to do the same after outbreaks of the skin infection called Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) have been reported in Roanoke Valley high schools.
MRSA is a staph infection and symptoms include redness, areas warm to the touch, pain, drainage, discomfort and swelling. The area may first appear as a boil, and any wound appearing suspicious or infected should be evaluated by a health professional. MRSA is transmitted through skin-to-skin contact.
Things you can do:
- It is important to remember the best way to address concerns of MRSA is to use good hygiene practices. Washing hands frequently with soap and water is one of the very best ways to reduce risk, not only for MRSA, but for other illnesses as well (such as flu and stomach viruses.)
- If you have a wound or sore, keep it covered. MRSA is not contagious unless there is close skin to skin contact. It is not transmitted through the air.
- Keep personal items personal. Don't share towels, razors, etc. with anyone else.
Roanoke College is taking extra precautions in several manners. Health Services is now conducting cultures of any suspicious wounds to be certain whether MRSA may be present. The Athletic department has discussed the issue with all athletes through their coaches. The Housekeeping department uses a disinfectant solution which kills MRSA . Housekeepers are conducting diligent and thorough disinfecting of all common area restrooms and locker rooms.
See MRSA FAQs for more information.
If you have questions or concerns, you may contact Sandy McGhee, director of student health services at 375-2286.