The Possible Role of Mobile Phones in Spreading Microorganisms in Hospitals*Corresponding Author: Vincenza La Fauci, Department of Biomedical Sciences and Morphological and Functional Images, A.O.U. Policlinico "G. Martino", Torre Biologica 1 Piano,Via Consolare Valeria,98125 MESSINA, Italy, Tel: +390902213620, Fax: +390902213351, Email: [email protected]
Received Date: Jul 25, 2014 / Accepted Date: Aug 11, 2014 / Published Date: Aug 18, 2014
Citation: La Fauci V, Grillo OC, Facciolà A, Merlina V, Squeri R (2014) The Possible Role of Mobile Phones in Spreading Microorganisms in Hospitals. J Microb Biochem Technol 6:334-336.DOI: 10.4172/1948-5948.1000164
Copyright: © 2014 . This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Mobile phones belonging to healthcare workers and inpatients represent a potential source of microorganisms, some being well-known sources of hospital infections. The aim of this study was to determine the extent of contamination of the hands and mobile phones of healthcare workers and inpatients. The study comprised 200 healthcare workers and 100 inpatients of the University Hospital in Messina (Italy) between April 1 and June 31, 2013. Bacterial contamination was detected on 230 mobile phones (76.6%) and on 250 hands (83.3%). The most frequently isolated bacteria belonged to the Staphylococcus genus. For hospital staff, 78% of mobile phones and 86% of hands were found to be contaminated. Similar results were obtained for inpatients whose mobile phones tested positive in 74% of cases, while for hands the rate was 78%. These findings are in line with international literature and demonstrate that routine everyday use of mobile phones by healthcare workers and inpatients represents an important vehicle of contamination since potentially pathogenic agents, capable of causing nosocomial infections, can pass from the telephone to the hands and vice versa.