Sick Student: Middle Schooler Diagnosed With MRSA

North Olmsted, OH - A 19 Action News Health Alert out of North Olmsted.

19 Action News has learned a middle school student has been diagnosed with MRSA.

The school has thoroughly cleaned the building in wake of the illness.

Here is the letter send home to parents advising them of the situation:

Dear Parent:

This morning, October 6, 2008, we were informed that a student at North Olmsted Middle School tested positive for MRSA (Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus.) We are appreciative the family came forward allowing us to communicate and work together to prevent the spread of this bacteria. Unless directed by a physician, students with MRSA infections should not be excluded from attending school.

From what we know about MRSA, early detection and attention provide the best opportunity forsuccessful treatment. MRSA is a concern for the district, faculty, staff and parents alike. I am writing to inform you that Ohio Department of Education, CDC, and Ohio Department of Health, contain important information to help families understand measures that can be taken to help safeguard their health.

Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) is a type of "staph" infection that is resistant to many antibiotics and frequently causes skin infections. Common signs of a skin infection include redness, warmth, swelling and tenderness. Often a MRSA infection will look like a spider bite, boil, abscess or pimple. If left untreated, it could progress into a more serious illness.

I want to reassure you that our District has taken a proactive approach to this problem and has instituted measures to help prevent the spread of bacteria, germs, and MRSA. Our custodians clean all areas regularly with a disinfectant. While the Health Department does not necessarily recommend special cleaning of schools when a MRSA case is reported, our district will perform extra cleaning and disinfecting in the cafeteria, gyms, locker rooms, buses and classrooms to help bring peace of mind and to do all we can to help prevent the spread of the bacteria.

MRSA bacteria live on the skin and may be introduced into your child's environment at any time. In order to prevent this from happening, effective hand washing, body cleanliness and wound care remain the primary means to prevent the spread of such infection. We are communicating and emphasizing this in the buildings, through our Athletic Department and to our community. Early treatment of MRSA cases is important. If your child shows any symptoms of MRSA, be sure to consult your health care provider as soon as possible.

The District is taking all necessary steps to ensure that our schools are disinfected as part or our continuing effort to protect the health and safety of our students and staff. Please take the time to read and observe the prevention measures as well as what should be done in case your child should exhibit any symptoms.

Thank you for your cooperation.


Cheryl L. Dubsky Ed.D.
North Olmsted City Schools