Food borne diseases are major health problems globally. Food handlers are potential causes of foodborne infections. It is estimated that 30-50% of the human population carries Staphylococcus aureus and its main habitat is the nasopharynx. This study aimed to determine the nasal carriage of enterotoxogenic Staphylococcus aureus among food handler working in Hawassa university referral Hospital, Hawassa, Ethiopia. A cross sectional study was conducted among food handlers working in Hawassa University students cafeterias from November, 2016 to April, 2017. Nasal Specimen was collected from the study subjects and inoculated on culture media. The grown organism was isolated and identification was made. Finally, identified organisms were analyzed for enterotoxogenic strain. A total of 258 food handlers were participated in this study. Females are dominant (70.2%) over male. Among 258 nasal swabs, 53 (20.5%) were positive for staphylococcus aureus. Of these isolate 23 (43.4%) were enterotoxogenic staphylococcus aureus. A total of seven commonly prescribed drugs were used to assess the antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of the identified staphylococcus aureus from food handlers.
Keywords: Nasal Carriage, Food Handler, Enterotoxogenic Staphylococcus aureus.