In a KSLA News 12 Alert: The so-called 'superbug' that killed a Virginia teenager and closed schools is prompting more education here at home. Willis Knighton has teamed-up with the non-profit agency 'Kids Health' to help children and their parents better understand potentially deadly staph infections.
We discovered that some experts are now calling it a worldwide pandemic. Its official name is Methicillin-Resistent Staphylococcus Aureas, better known as MRSA. Dr. Raymond Coghlan, an infectious disease specialist at Willis Knighton, described why MRSA continues to be a threat. "Like all organisms they evolve like we do; sometimes for their betterment and our detriment."
It has actually been around 40-years in the U.S. The difference now? The dangerous bacterial strains have now made it outside hospitals and into the general public. The most virulent strains are leading to more deaths including right here at home. Dr. Coghlan revealed, "we have had several people in their 30's die."
Parents and their kids can now go to Willis Knighton's web site, click on 'Health Information, 'Kids Health' and type MRSA in the search box. That's where they can find the latest information. And, it's not just hospitals and medical agencies that are taking precautions because of this so-called 'superbug;' but also schools throughout the Ark-La-Tex.
Bossier Schools Superintendent Ken Kruithof told us they took action after seeing developments unfold in Virginia and the student death that prompted those schools to be shut down and sanitized.
Kruithof Told KSLA News 12, "our nursing supervisor had actually already talked to her nurses about it." He said the message delivered to staff, parents and kids included everything from washing your hands to better sanitizing of gym dressing rooms.
And, if you suspect trouble don't wait to get help. Kruithof instructed, "if they have a child that has a sore that becomes infected or something like that, they probably need to make sure that the doctor sees them."
The government reports well over 18-thousand deaths from MRSA in 2005 alone. But, most of them took place in health care treatment facilities and nursing homes.
Story by Jeff Ferrell