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RMC Bayonet Point

Local HCA Hospitals Team Up with Pasco County Schools to Prevent the Spread of MRSA

Clean Hands Are Cool Hands. PSA debuts nationwide encouraging healthy hand hygiene in time for Back-to-School.

Trinity, Florida (August 25, 2008) – The HCA Hospitals of Pasco County and the Pasco County School District have teamed up to launch the national program, Clean Hands are Cool Hands, in local elementary schools.

Clean Hands Are Cool Hands is a national campaign to prevent the spread of the Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), common yet highly contagious bacteria that frequently inhabit a person’s skin or nostrils.

The hospitals of HCA West Florida and the HCA Foundation, which is the philanthropic arm of Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), have teamed up with popular teen actor and recording artist Mitchel Musso, best known for his role as “Oliver” in the Disney Channel series Hannah Montana, to create a public service announcement educating kids and their parents on the importance of hand washing to prevent the spread of MRSA in schools.

Because of its resistance to antibiotics, MRSA accounts for 19,000 deaths in the United States each year, 86% of which are healthcare-associated and 14% which are community acquired. HCA’s 169 hospitals across the nation under the leadership of Chief Medical Officer Dr. Jonathan B. Perlin, have implemented more aggressive infection prevention protocols to tackle this issue. “The growing prevalence of MRSA in hospitals and communities, including in schools, is creating new challenges for the healthcare community,” said Dr. Perlin. “It is important to make parents and kids aware of the little things that they can do at home and at school to prevent its spread, such as washing their hands with soap and water or using a hand sanitizer.”

The national campaign will feature a 30 second television PSA which was shot in Los Angeles, California and features Musso interacting in an animated world of every day items that can pass on germs and make us sick. Musso emphasizes how easy it is to come in contact with germs throughout the day and how something as simple as washing your hands can dramatically reduce the spread of these germs and help prevent the illnesses that they cause.

The PSA and campaign are aimed at kids in grades K through 5 and is set to debut later this month on television stations across the United States.

“HCA has been a national leader in developing a comprehensive patient safety program to eliminate healthcare associated MRSA in our hospitals,” said Daniel Miller, President of HCA West Florida Division. “We’re excited to share our successes with students, teachers, coaches and parents to prevent the spread of MRSA in our communities.”

“This program supports one of the essential questions of our curriculum: How do I make positive contributions to my community and classroom? Being responsible and respectful of others by keeping hands clean helps keep everyone healthy,” explains Kathy Rushe, Principal of Trinity Elementary School.

Photo Opportunity
The kick off will begin at 10:15 AM at Trinity Elementary School with a presentation to the students and teachers. Dr. Perlin, (who is a former CEO of the Veterans Health Administration) will present the Clean Hands are Cool Hands program. In addition, the student body will be treated to a surprise guest celebrity appearance.

About Community Hospital:
Community Hospital is located in New Port Richey, FL. A leading acute care center and known for specialties including a dedicated Cancer Program recognized by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons, an all private room Women’s Center for Gynecology and Urology Services, and an all private room Spine and Joint Care Center, Community Hospital is Joint Commission Accredited, and a Joint Commission Primary Stroke Center. Community Hospital offers the only da Vinci Robotic System in Pasco, Hernando and Citrus County.

Over 400 physicians, 1000 employees and 200 volunteers comprise our healthcare delivery team.

Construction has begun on the Medical Center of Trinity, a 236 bed, state-of-the-art, private room facility at the corner of SR 54 and Little Road in Trinity to replace Community Hospital in late 2010.

For more information, visit our website at

About Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point:
Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point is a 290-bed acute care facility located in Hudson, FL. Home of the nationally acclaimed Heart Institute, over 350 physicians, 900 employees and 500 volunteers comprise their integrated healthcare delivery team. Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point has been designated a 100 Top Hospital seven years by Solucient, and has been named twice (1999 & 2002) by U.S. News & World Report as one of America’s Best Hospitals in Heart and Heart Surgery. It is an Accredited Chest Pain Center, JCAHO Accredited Stroke Center and Accredited Cancer Program.

For additional information on Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point visit: or

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