Mrsa | Hinsdale Residents Create MRSA Awareness At Loyola

In 2000 Jeanine Thomas of Hinsdale went into the hospital for what was supposed to be routine ankle surgery ” instead, she nearly died and her life changed profoundly. She was infected with MRSA, methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, which can cause deadly infections in patients in health care facilities and in the community.

Five years and seven surgeries later, Thomas was determined to fight back.

In 2003 she founded the MRSA Survivors Network, a nationwide patient and consumer advocacy group that raises awareness and fosters a community for people infected with MRSA. Then Thomas teamed up with State Rep. Patti Bellock, R-47th, also of Hinsdale, and together they worked to pass the MRSA Screening and Reporting Act, requiring all ICU and at-risk patients to be screened for MRSA.

Oct. 2 has been officially designated World MRSA Day. Thomas, along with Bellock and Pat Merryweather of Naperville, are co-chairs of the World MRSA Day kickoff event and Global MRSA Summit. This year’s summit theme is the MRSA Epidemic ” a Call to Action. The Chicago event will be held at Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine in Maywood, 2160 S. First Ave. in Maywood, beginning at 10:30 a.m. It will be broadcast via live web stream at and

“MRSA was discovered under a microscope for the first time on Oct. 2, 1961, so this marks the 50th year that we’ve known about it,” Thomas said.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Infection, nearly 18,000 people die of MRSA infections in U.S. health care facilities annually. Approximately 100,000 people died from infections in the past decade.

“More Americans die every year from MRSA than from

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