An Athlete’s Guide to Prevent the Spread of Bacteria September 05, 2016 09:00

NYSDOH Recommendations to Prevent CA-MRSA

• Shower thoroughly with soap after all practices and competitions. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizers. If your hands are visibly soiled, wash thoroughly with soap and water.

• Do not share towels or other personal items such as clothing, razors or equipment. Since these items can become contaminated and may spread disease, regularly wash items after each use.

• Check your skin regularly for any reddened areas, pimples or boils causing pus, swelling or pain.

• Avoid contact with other people’s wounds or bandages.

• All cuts and other abrasions on the skin should be washed with soap and water and covered with dry, sterile bandages. These bandages should be replaced daily until healed.

• If you have a wound that can not be covered adequately, notify your coach or school nurse.

• Consider refraining from practice or competitions until the wound can be covered or has completely healed.

• Tell your school nurse, coach or athletic trainer if you think you have a skin infection. Sports gear, such as helmets, that are non-washable should be wiped down with disinfectants after each use.

• Ask about routine cleaning schedules for shared equipment, such as towels, uniforms and athletic equipment.

• See your health care provider if you think you have CA-MRSA.

• If an infection is identified, involve appropriate personnel, such as coach, school nurse, administration and parents to take proper precautions to avoid the spread of infection.