Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Precautions taken after two MRSA cases at Hernando High, officials say

BROOKSVILLE — Hernando County school officials said Friday the recent MRSA diagnoses at Hernando High School were limited to two football players and that the school has taken extensive precautionary measures to sanitize facilities.

School officials began cleaning parts of the school Oct. 5, before the two students were officially diagnosed with the bacterial infection, said district spokesman Roy Gordon.

The school's locker room was powerwashed and treated with a special cleaning solvent. The school also sanitized the weight room and the students' classrooms, he said. School officials cleaned the facilities three separate times over the course of the month, he said.

There have been no further issues with the bacteria.

The district did not provide information on the condition of the two students.

The students were diagnosed Oct. 17, the same day school officials sent home a letter from the Hernando County Health Department notifying parents and telling them how to take precautions, Gordon said.

MRSA stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and can be difficult to treat due to its resistance to many kinds of antibiotics. The infection can begin as a small pimple or boil, and is most commonly spread by having close physical contact with an infected person. It can also be contracted from items like towels, sheets and razors.

While the infection is worrisome, it can be controlled, said Ann-Gayl Ellis, spokeswoman for the Hernando County Health Department.

"It's very treatable; we can prevent the spread of it," Ellis said. "Neither the school district nor the Department of Health want parents and children unnecessarily alarmed."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not recommend keeping children out of school because of a MRSA diagnosis, she said. Doctors recommend the person see a physician for care, keep the wound covered, avoid skin-to-skin contact, wash hands and not share personal items.

Times staff writer Tony Marrero contributed to this report. Contact Danny Valentine at or (352) 848-1432. On Twitter: @HernandoTimes.

Precautions taken after two MRSA cases at Hernando High, officials say 11/01/13 [Last modified: Friday, November 1, 2013 9:37pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Comedian and activist Dick Gregory dies at 84


    The comedian Dick Gregory rose to national prominence in the early 1960s as a black satirist whose audacious style of humor was biting, subversive and topical, mostly centered on current events, politics and above all, racial tensions. His trademark was the searing punchline.

    Dick Gregory, a comedian, activist and author, died Saturday. [Tribune News Service, 2011]
  2. Winter Haven police investigating armed robbery at Dollar General


    WINTER HAVEN — Police are investigating an armed robbery Friday night of a Dollar General store on W Lake Ruby Drive.

  3. Rowdies settle for draw at home


    ST. PETERSBURG — The good news for the Rowdies is that they still haven't lost a game at Al Lang Stadium since late April. The bad news is they had to settle for a 1-1 tie against Ottawa on Saturday night in front of 6,710 sweaty fans.

  4. Bats come to life, but Rays' freefall continues (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG —The six runs seemed like a ton, just the second time the Rays had scored that many in a game during their numbing two-plus-weeks stretch of offensive impotency, and amazingly, the first time at the Trop in nearly two months.

    Lucas Duda connects for a two-run home run in the sixth, getting the Rays within 7-5. A Logan Morrison home run in the ninth made it 7-6, but Tampa Bay couldn’t complete the comeback.
  5. 'Free speech rally' cut short after massive counterprotest


    BOSTON — Thousands of demonstrators chanting anti-Nazi slogans converged Saturday on downtown Boston in a boisterous repudiation of white nationalism, dwarfing a small group of conservatives who cut short their planned "free speech rally" a week after a gathering of hate groups led to bloodshed in Virginia.

    Thousands of people march against a “free speech rally” planned Saturday in Boston. About 40,000 people were in attendance.