Routines and certificate of MRSA-screening
Incoming students who have been active in hospital environments outside of Sweden during the last twelve months must according to the Swedish Communicable Diseases Act (Smittskyddslagen) be screened for MRSA upon arrival in Sweden.
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) is a type of staph bacteria that is resistant to beta-lactam-antibiotics. The prevalence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria has increased in recent years. For many of the resistant bacterial species comes that they can be included in the individual's normal bacterial flora, and infection occurs when the body's defence somehow disturbed.
MRSA is common in many countries, particularly in hospitals but so far less common in Sweden. To prevent it from spreading, people who have been in contact with the medical services in other countries or in regions where MRSA is more common, as either a patient or as staff, are therefore to undergo MRSA-screening before they can participate in clinic-based work or studies. Incoming students who have been active in hospital environments (or been patients themselves) outside of Sweden during the last twelve months must therefore according to Swedish law (the Swedish Communicable Diseases Act, Smittskyddslagen) be screened for MRSA upon arrival at the Sahlgrenska Academy.
The screening upon arrival in Gothenburg must be done regardless of previous screening in the home country. Samples will be taken from the nose, the throat, the perineum and, if applicable, from skin lesions. Students without skin lesions are allowed to start their clinical practice while waiting for the test result. If you have a skin lesion, you are not allowed to have contact with patients until you test negative for MRSA.
- Staff/students who have worked/been cared for abroad within the last 12 months should be screened before entering into clinical work
- Staff/students with skin lesions, for instance, eczema, shall not take part in patient care until negative culture results have been verified
The process if MRSA is verified:
- Vårdhygien communicates the positive test result to The Student Health Center (Feelgood)/Infectious Disease Clinic. The Student Health Center (Feelgood) notifies the student
- The student is called to the Infectious Disease Clinic as soon as possible for examination, testing and information. Attending physician at the Infectious Disease Clinic will evaluate risk factors of the student and type of clinical work the student will do. Before this evaluation is completed the student will be prevented from entering clinical work according to the regulations from the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen)
- The return to clinical work will be done in consultation between attending physician at the Infectious Disease Clinic, Vårdhygien and Infectious Disease Control (Smittskydd) in Västra Götaland.
When a student at the Sahlgrenska Academy is a verified MRSA carrier, an individual plan for the student is elaborated by attending physician at the MRSA department at the Infectious Disease Clinic in collaboration with the department of Vårdhygien at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital.
A person with confirmed MRSA must follow the stipulated rules given by the attending physician according to the Swedish Communicable Diseases Act, Smittskyddslagen. A person with confirmed MRSA should not perform clinical work in a clinical unit assessed as a “risk unit”.
Attending physician should also inform about the possibility for waiving stipulated rules and medical check-ups when MRSA is verified if the following criteria are met: At least three negative samples of MRSA are taken under a twelve-month period (from first to the third test) at a person with healthy skin and no other individual risk factors are present (Guidelines at National Board of Health and Welfare).
The testing is free of charge for all students.
Basic hygiene regulations in the Swedish Health Service
The following regulations are mandatory for all students and staff working in the health care sector in Sweden.