Perceptions of Certified Athletic Trainers regarding Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Prevention Strategies

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Virginia Tech


Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) has been receiving significant attention, highlighting an increased risk of infectious transmission associated with athletic participation. As MRSA infections are becoming increasing virulent, athletic trainers are presented with immediate prevention challenges. While recommendations have been offered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention outlining basic prevention procedures, adherence to proposed guidelines and actual perception of the threat still pose the greatest hurdles to eradication of MRSA. Success in control and prevention of transmission of MRSA in athletic environments can be furthered by first investigating the perceptions of the problem in one of the first line of defense for athletes—their athletic trainers. Of particular importance are the perceptions of trainers' adherence to guidelines, perceptions of protocol standards, and relative threat of MRSA in the athletic environment. This study attempts to determine these perceptions and predict how athletic trainers will receive and adhere to standardized guidelines through written policy for MRSA prevention. Results reflect an increase in the awareness of MRSA as a threat to athletics since 2004. Overall positive perception of the development of guidelines and protocols specifically targeted to prevention of MRSA transmission in the athletic environment were also defined through this study. Athletic trainers surveyed expressed strong desire for additional training in procedures specific to reducing transmission of MRSA to prevent outbreaks.



policy development, Infection Control, Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), prevention standards