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Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust
MRSA Screen
Test information
For MRSA screening specimens other than Nose/Groin
See infection control policy for collection instructions.  Do NOT discard the liquid in the container, required for processing. 
Any materials used in taking these samples must be discarded in an approved clinical waste and/or sharps container. 
Compliance with  postal and transport regulations  is essential (Refer  to ’Pathology 
Policy for the Transport of Specimens’ (PO-U-GEN-SpecTransport). 
Specimens should be transported in leak proof transport swab containers in sealed plastic bags attached to the request forms. 
Swabs should be transported in Amies transport medium with charcoal or Amies 
Liquid transport media (these are to be phased out during 2017-18). Dry swabs will not maintain the viability of the organisms. 
If processing is delayed, storing at room temperature is preferable. Delays of over 48 h are undesirable.
Special requirements
Requests for MRSA PCR received after 13:00 are labelled with a separate laboratory number, booked in and then immediately cultured and incubated with the rack/plate labelled with the time of incubation so that it may be read the following morning after the correct incubation time
Tube type
Charcoal swab
Charcoal swab
TAT Inpatient (urgent)
2 days
TAT GP/Outpatient
2 days
Referral lab
Page last updated: 08 September 2021