Drug-Resistant Staph on the Rise in Santa Clara County
The number of reported antibiotic-resistant staph infections in Santa Clara County has increased almost threefold since 2005, a jump that is drawing concerns from county health officials, the San Jose Mercury News reports. By comparison, the number of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections in the county jail only increased by 5% from 2005 because of improved treatment and hygiene techniques, according to public health officials.
The bacteria is transferred through skin-to-skin contact and can cause serious infections or pneumonia, especially in hospitals, nursing homes or other locations where people live in close proximity. The increase can be partly explained by an improved awareness of MRSA, but better diagnoses cannot completely account for the rise in cases, according to the Mercury News.
Treatment can cost up to $30,000 (Feder Ostrov, San Jose Mercury News, 3/22).