Student athlete at Higley High School treated for MRSA

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

GILBERT -- A student athlete at Higley High School was hospitalized and is being treated for MRSA infection.

The student told the coach on Aug. 18 that he had been stung by a scorpion off campus, according to Tony Malaj, director of support services and community partnerships with the Higley Unified School District.

The student sought medical attention and was notified that he tested positive for MRSA.

Malaj said the student did not practice or participate in any activities or athletic events once the infection was identified.

The Higley Unified School District notified parents on Monday.

Superintendent Denise Birdwell told parents in a letter that the district has taken the necessary precautions as outlined by the Arizona Department of Health Services.

The school locker rooms, weight room, restrooms, classrooms, door handles and cafeteria areas were cleaned over the weekend.

Malaj said the student might be back at school on Wednesday.

No other cases have been reported at the school.

MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is a strain of staph that's resistant to common antibiotics and can be fatal.