There has been an increase in the incidence of MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), a type of Staph bacteria that is resistant to certain antibiotics. Here at Georgetown, a number of infections occur throughout the year. While still primarily a healthcare setting infection (hospital-acquired), MRSA infections have been occurring with more frequency in settings not associated with a hospital or healthcare facility (community-acquired).

These community-acquired infections can cause skin infections. There are several situations that may increase your risk of acquiring an MRSA infection. They include:

  • Skin-to-skin contact with someone who has a Staph infection
  • Contact with items and surfaces that have Staph on them
  • Openings in your skin such as cuts or scrapes; and
  • Poor hygiene

In an effort to keep Staph infections, including MRSA, from spreading, the Student Health Center recommends the following:

  • Wash your hands often or use an alcohol-based sanitizer
  • Keep your cuts and scrapes clean and cover them with bandages
  • Do not touch other people’s cuts or bandages
  • Do not share personal items such as towels or razors

If you develop a skin infection that initially looks like a pimple or boil but then becomes swollen, painful, or filled with pus, you should call the Student Health Center for an appointment to be seen within 24 hours. These types of infections need prompt treatment.

These recommendations are consistent with those put forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For more information about MRSA infections occurring in the community visit their website at

Student Health Center
Darnall Hall Ground Floor
(202) 687-2200