Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is one of the most important microorganisms which has increasingly become resistant to most commonly used antimicrobials. This research investigated the epidemiology, nasal carriage prevalence and the antibiotic susceptibility profile of MRSA among farm animals and farm workers in the Central Region of Ghana. A total of 396 nasal swabs were collected from farm animals (94.9%) and farm workers (5.1%). Antibiotic susceptibility test was carried out on Mueller Hinton agar using Kirby-Bauer disc diffusion method. Epidemiological risk factors were assessed using pre-designed questionnaires. Results showed that the overall prevalence of MRSA in the Central Region of Ghana was 49.2% (195/396). Pigs recorded the highest nasal carriage prevalence of 50.2% (157/313) followed by sheep 45.1% (23/51), goats 50% (6/12) and humans 45% (9/20). MRSA isolates were 100% susceptible to both Vancomycin and Augmentin. Epidemiological risks factors for nasal colonisation of farm workers in this study were: direct contact with pigs (p=0.000), last period of antibiotic administration (p=0.020), and the type of apparels worn (nose mask (p=0.000), and gloves (p=0.020)). Epidemiological risk factors for nasal colonisation of farm animals in this study were: the type of antibiotic administered (p=0.000) and the last period for antibiotic administration (p=0.000). Phenotypic detection of MRSA and their resistance to the tested antibiotics should be a cause of alarm in the Central Region of Ghana.
Key words: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, prevalence, nasal carriage, epidemiology, farm animals, workers.
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