The Importance of Nasal Decolonization for Infection Control

July 8, 2016

nurse ready to speak about importance of nasal decolonization
According to the Centers for Disease Control, Hospital acquired infections (HAIs), including the infections caused by Methicillin-resistant
Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), are costing hospitals more than $30 billion per year. New federal health care rules are also reducing reimbursements to hospitals for HAI treatment.

Studies show that nasal carriage plays a major role in HAI and Surgical Site Infections (SSI) and that infection control protocols which include nasal decolonization reduced infections by 44%. Nasal decolonization is a promising opportunity for infection control and remains under-utilized.

infographic about nasal infectionsThe nasal vestibule is a critical site where pathogens, such as S. aureus, colonize. After colonization pathogens can be transmitted, often by hand to nose contact, to others or to the skin where they can cause infections. Hand to nose contact occurs about every 4 minutes on average, often compromising hand hygiene and risking contamination. 80% of SSI pathogens’ DNA can be tracked to the patient’s own nose.

On the basis of new reimbursement policies and significant recent studies, facilities and hospitals recognize the imperative of patient nasal carriage reduction programs such as Universal Decontamination (HCA Hospitals), pre-operative screen and treat, and mupirocin use prior to surgery. Research also indicates that including nasal hygiene for health care workers (HCW) can also be beneficial.

The Medical University of South Carolina initiated a clinical study that incorporated Nozin Nasal Sanitizer (see link at The study is now complete and the results are published in the American Journal of Infection Control.

Nozin® Nasal Sanitizer® Advanced Antiseptic is a non-prescription product with demonstrated microbial killing activity at a 98.8% median reduction in nasal carriage of S. aureus in a daily treatment protocol. It contains ethanol as the active ingredient combined with natural emollients and is applied with a swab to the vestibule of the nose for nasal bacteria carriage reduction.

Marshall Medical Center, which includes Marshall Hospital, a fully accredited acute care facility with 113 beds located in Placerville and several outpatient facilities, adopted Nozin® Nasal Sanitizer® as part of their screen and treat protocol in 2015.

nasal sanitizer benefits infographicNina Deatherage, BSN, RN, PHN, CIC and Infection Control Lead at Marshall, explains the reason for adopting Nozin, “The use of the Nozin product with our MRSA colonized patients enables us to actively reduce the bacterial carriage of those who might be contributing to transmission and to lessen the environmental burden of potential pathogens.” Nozin Nasal Drug Reduces Risk and Cost Associated with MRSA at Marshall Medical Center

At the APIC 2016 conference, Nina Deatherage, BSN, RN, PHN, CIC, presented results of eliminating MRSA contact precautions at Marshall Medical Center. This poster abstract concluded: “Elimination of CP in MRSA non-infected patients while maintaining low infection rates and improving staff and patient satisfaction was achieved with IC protocols utilizing nasal and skin decolonization. A significant reduction in CP-related PPE costs also resulted.”5  Nozin® Nasal Sanitizer® antiseptic was used to achieve nasal decolonization. More information can be found at the APIC website.

nozin product display boxesBenefits of Nozin® Nasal Sanitizer® use in your facility

An important, new paradigm, Nozin® Nasal Sanitizer® offers an innovative tool for fast and easy nasal carriage reduction that is clinically proven to reduce Staph aureus carriage.(9)This infection control breakthrough can be used to:

  • Decreased bacterial burden contributes to reduced risk of infection in patients and staff
  • Improve Staph aureus prevention
  • Provide sense of more secure, healthier environment to help increase HCAHP scores
  • Increase attention to wellness of staff for workplace health and employee satisfaction

Nasal Sanitizer® can provide a new tool to help in the control of nasal colonization by potentially pathogenic bacteria, such as S. aureus.

  • Nasal Sanitizer® targets a critical point of carriage
  • Kills 99.99% of germs
  • Broad spectrum efficacy
  • Proven safe and effective
  • Clinically shown to reduce nasal carriage, without antibiotics

Nozin® Nasal Sanitizer® is currently being implemented and used daily by staff and patients in facilities and hospitals across the country.

To learn more about Nozin® Nasal Sanitizer®, please visit our professional website to request samples and download our free white paper, “Emerging Strategies on Achieving Nasal Decolonization For Reducing Hospital Acquired Infections.


  1. Olsen K et al. Prevalence and population structure of Staphylococcus aureus nasal carriage in healthcare workers in a general population. The Tromsø Staph and Skin Study. Epidemiol Infect 141:143–152, 2013.
  2. Coates, T et al. Nasal decolonization of Staphylococcus aureus with mupirocin: strengths, weaknesses and future prospects. J Antimicrob Chemother 64,9-15, 2009.
  3. Nicas M, Jones RM. Relative contributions of four exposure pathways to influenza infection risk, Risk Analysis. 29:1292-1303, 2009.
  4. Huang SS et al. Targeted versus universal decolonization to prevent ICU infection. N Engl J Med 368(24):2255-65, 2013.
  5. Deatherage, N. Impact of Reduced Isolation and Contact Precaution Procedures on Infection Rates and Facility Costs, APIC 2016, Poster.


Health Professionals:
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