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Scots hospitals to screen for MRSA

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One million patients will be tested for MRSA under a one-year pilot scheme in Scotland, announced last week.

Hospitals in Ayrshire and Arran, Grampian and the Western Isles will take part in the Scottish Government programme, which starts this month.

All emergency and elective patients will be given nasal swabs on admission. Those with MRSA will be given a disinfectant wash or antibiotic ointment.

If it proves practical, the scheme will be rolled out across Scotland by April 2010.

MRSA screening is being introduced in England for all elective patients this year and for all emergencies within the next three years.

However, research has questioned whether screening all inpatients for MRSA would significantly reduce infection

(NT News, 25 March, p7).

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