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Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections are mostly preventable but thousands of Americans die every year from them and many more suffer needlessly because hospitals fail to protect patients from being exposed to these dangerous superbugs.

Click here for State Health Care Acquired Infection Reports

Consumers Union Documents

Consumers Union News Releases

  • California Issues Report Detailing Hospital Infection Rates For 2011

    The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued a number of reports today updating hospital infection rates for hospitals throughout the state during 2011. All California hospitals are required to publicly report patient infection data as a result of a 2008 state law that aims to encourage hospitals to improve efforts to prevent infections.

  • HHS Announces National Campaign to Improve Patient Safety

    CONSUMERS UNION SAFE PATIENT PROJECT — NEWS RELEASE Please Note: Consumers Union can connect reporters with patients who have suffered from hospital infections and other medical harm. To find out more, contact Michael McCauley at For Immediate Release: Tuesday, April 12, 2011 Contact: Michael McCauley (, 415-902-9537 (cell), 415-431-6747,

  • California Issues Reports on Hospital-Acquired Infections

    The reports provide a first glimpse at Hospital Infection Rates. Consumers Union press release recommending the state work harder to ensure the data is accurate and provided in a format consumers can easily view and understand.

  • Report Finds That Only Half of California Hospital Workers Got Flu Vaccine

    Report Finds That Only Half of California Hospital Workers Got Flu Vaccine

  • Consumers Union Finds Slow Progress on Patient Safety in California

    California Department of Public Health Has Failed to Carry Out Key Requirements of Recent Patient Safety Laws

Blog Posts

News Articles

  • Hospital-Related Infections Hit Nearly 650,000 Patients in 2011: CDC
    Source: HealthDay (Wednesday March 26, 2014)

    “About one of every 25 U.S. hospital patients contracts an infection during their stay, and doctors can’t say for certain why half those infections occur, according to a new study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

  • NPR: Fewer People Are Getting Infections In Hospitals, But Many Still Die
    Source: NPR (Wednesday March 26, 2014)

    NPR covers the new CDC report on hospital infections. “Hospital-acquired infections continue to be a big problem in health care, with 4 percent of patients getting a new infection while hospitalized, a study finds. And 11 percent of those infections turn deadly.”

  • One in 25 patients battling hospital-acquired infections: CDC
    Source: Reuters (Wednesday March 26, 2014)

    “On any given day, one in 25 hospitalized patients – 4 percent – is battling an infection picked up in a hospital or other healthcare facility, according to a new survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).”

  • CDC Director: Hospital infections down but still deadly, dangerous
    Source: FoxNews (Wednesday March 26, 2014)

    CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden writes a piece for FoxNews on the dangers of hospital infections. The CDC released a progress report on hospital infections today that found some progress in reducing hospital infections but more work needs to be done. Dr. Frieden shares five patient stories on hospital infections, including stories from advocates in Consumers Union’s Safe Patient Project network.

  • Olympia man suing Veterans Administration after he contracted MRSA
    Source: The News Tribune (Sunday February 23, 2014)

    “I came in with a simple fracture and I came out without a leg.” – Vietnam vet

Research and Reports

  • CDC Healthcare-associated Infections (HAI) Progress Report
    Source: CDC (Wednesday March 26, 2014)

    “Healthcare-Associated infections are a major, yet often preventable, threat to patient safety. The [CDC's] National and State Healthcare-Associated Infections Progress Report expands and provides an update on previous reports detailing progress toward the ultimate goal of eliminating healthcare-associated infections.”

  • 2009-2012 Oregon Healthcare Acquired Infections annual report
    Source: Oregon Health Authority (Friday August 2, 2013)

    New Oregon report on hospital acquired infections, including data on 60 hospitals in the state. The report covers eleven mandatory reporting elements, including nine potential infections acquired while receiving care for other medical conditions. The report includes summary data for the state and individual data sheets for the 60 Oregon acute care hospitals.

  • Washington Advocates for Patient Safety Additional Comments on WA hospital infection draft report
    Source: Washington Advocates for Patient Safety (Friday July 12, 2013)

    Washington Advocates for Patient Safety Additional Comments on Draft Report “Healthcare Associated Infections: 2013 Report to the Washington Legislature” by the Washington Department of Health.

  • NEJM: Targeted versus Universal Decolonization to Prevent ICU Infection
    Source: New England Journal of Medicine (Thursday June 13, 2013)

    Free Preview: Targeted versus Universal Decolonization to Prevent ICU Infection. Study finds: In routine ICU practice, universal decolonization was more effective than targeted decolonization or screening and isolation in reducing rates of MRSA clinical isolates and bloodstream infection from any pathogen.

  • A Perspective on the Evidence Regarding Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus Surveillance (Free Access)
    Source: Journal of Patient Safety (Tuesday August 7, 2012)

    The manuscript on MRSA Surveillance and the not setting of standards which was published in the Journal of Patient Safety is now FREE ACCESS. This article by Health Watch USA tells part of the story of the behind the USA not setting standards for MRSA Surveillance. “The publication in prominent journals of 2 studies, the STAR*ICU Study and the MRSA-Swiss Study, seems to have had a disproportionate impact on health-care policy, which has stymied the widespread adoption of MRSA active surveillance testing in hospitals.” — Journal of Patient Safety, Aug. 2012.