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Open Access Highly Accessed Research

Are we aware how contaminated our mobile phones with nosocomial pathogens?

Fatma Ulger1*, Saban Esen2, Ahmet Dilek1, Keramettin Yanik3, Murat Gunaydin3 and Hakan Leblebicioglu2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Anesthesiology and Reanimation, Faculty of Medicine, Ondokuz Mayis University, Kurupelit, 55139, Samsun, Turkey

2 Department of Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Ondokuz Mayis University, Kurupelit, 55139, Samsun, Turkey

3 Department of Clinical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Ondokuz Mayis University, Kurupelit, 55139, Samsun, Turkey

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Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials 2009, 8:7  doi:10.1186/1476-0711-8-7

Published: 6 March 2009

Abstract

Background

The objective of this study was to determine the contamination rate of the healthcare workers' (HCWs') mobile phones and hands in operating room and ICU. Microorganisms from HCWs' hands could be transferred to the surfaces of the mobile phones during their use.

Methods

200 HCWs were screened; samples from the hands of 200 participants and 200 mobile phones were cultured.

Results

In total, 94.5% of phones demonstrated evidence of bacterial contamination with different types of bacteria. The gram negative strains were isolated from mobile phones of 31.3% and the ceftazidime resistant strains from the hands were 39.5%. S. aureus strains isolated from mobile phones of 52% and those strains isolated from hands of 37.7% were methicillin resistant. Distributions of the isolated microorganisms from mobile phones were similar to hands isolates. Some mobile phones were contaminated with nosocomial important pathogens.

Conclusion

These results showed that HCWs' hands and their mobile phones were contaminated with various types of microorganisms. Mobile phones used by HCWs in daily practice may be a source of nosocomial infections in hospitals.