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Racial Disparities in Invasive MRSA Infections

Clin Infect Dis; ePub 2018 Apr 5; Gualandi, et al

Despite significant decreases in healthcare-associated invasive methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) rates, racial differences did not change over time, a recent study found. Researchers analyzed Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Emerging Infections Program 2005-2014 surveillance data in 9 US states to determine whether reductions in invasive MRSA incidence affected racial disparities in rates. Case classification included hospital-onset (HO, culture >3 days after admission), healthcare-associated community onset (HACO, culture ≤3 days after admission and dialysis, hospitalization, surgery, or long-term care residence within 1 year prior), or community-associated (CA, all others). They found:

  • During the study period, invasive HO and HACO (but not CA) MRSA rates decreased.
  • However, blacks had higher rates for HO, HACO, and CA.
  • Limiting the analysis to chronic dialysis patients reduced, but did not eliminate, the higher HACO MRSA rates among blacks.
  • These racial differences did not change over time.


Gualandi N, Mu Y, Bamberg WM, et al. Racial disparities in invasive methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections, 2005-2014. [Published online ahead of print April 5, 2018]. Clin Infect Dis. doi:10.1093/cid/ciy277.