Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (SAB) Prevention Resources

Healthcare-associated Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (SAB) infections are commonly associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Preventing these infections is a critical activity for health service organisations.

Long-standing and recent literature support the value of sustained infection prevention and control practices in reducing the incidence of these preventable SAB infections.

Measures to prevent SAB infections in health care include:

  • Hand hygiene to minimise transmission of microorganisms on healthcare worker’s hands
  • Optimal insertion, management and removal of intravascular devices
  • Preoperative methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) screening
  • Perioperative antimicrobial prophylaxis and targeted, appropriate antimicrobial therapy
  • Optimisation of surgical site management
  • Feedback on infection surveillance and reporting to clinicians.

The Australian Health Ministers’ Advisory Council endorsed a new national benchmark for healthcare-associated SAB infections for public hospital reporting, which was implemented from 1 July, 2020.

The new benchmark is 1.0 per 10,000 patient days.

To support implementation of the revised SAB benchmark, the Commission has developed a compendium of resources to support SAB prevention.

The Commission has also produced the following resources to assist with SAB surveillance:

Implementation Guide for Surveillance of Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia

Surveillance Validation Guide for healthcare-associated Staphylococcus aureus Bloodstream Infection

All states and territories will have a range of existing resources to further support SAB prevention, such as maintaining skin integrity, wound care and invasive device management; check your state and territory health authority website.

If your organisation has relevant resources to contribute to this compendium, please email HAI@safetyandquality.gov.au