Screening of methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus carriers among food handlers

K. L. Shobha, Amita Shobha Rao, Ullas Kamath, Thivyashini A/P B. Rajenthiran, Ee Hui Yin, Lim Yu Ern, Quek Chia Wei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Food handlers play an important role in the transmission of food borne diseases and spread the disease worldwide. Staphylococcus aureus infections acquired in the community has been increasing with the emergence of strains resistance to methicillin. In this study assessment was done among food handlers to know the carriers status of Staphylococcus aureus from nasal cavity and skin at a Coastal town in Karnataka Method: A total of 56 food handlers consented for the study. Out of which 112 samples were collected from anterior nares and palms from these food handlers. The analyses was done by using standard conventional methods for isolation and identification of Staphylococcus aureus. Antibiotic susceptibility of the isolates was done by Kirby-Bauer disc diffusion method. Food handlers harbouring Staphylococcus aureus as carriers were advised to decolonize with topical mupirocin ointment. Results: Out of a total of 56 food handlers,fifty were males. Majority of the food handlers were in the age group of 18 to 30 years. Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) was isolated from four samples and eight samples grew methicillin sensitive Staphylococcus aureus. All the strains were susceptible to vancomycin. Conclusion: Food handlers can harbour MRSA in the nasal cavity or skin, and can spread the disease to consumers. Effective prophylactic measures like health education, wearing of proper protective gadget while handling food, maintaining personal hygiene, decolonization with mupirocin ointment and periodic screening of food handlers for MRSA can increase the measures of food safety.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)358-363
Number of pages6
JournalIndian Journal of Public Health Research and Development
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 01-07-2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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