A third player from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers has been diagnosed with a MRSA infection. The team announced the finding on Friday and addressed concerns for fans and opposing teams.
Dr. Deverick J. Anderson, co-director of Duke Infection Control Outreach Network, met with players to discuss the recent MRSA outbreak. The doctor spent 90 minutes talking to the players before finally allowing practice to move forward.
“I can say that I believe it is a safe environment for the players and staff, and I think there are a few reasons why I can say that,” Dr. Anderson said. “I got to come and review the facilities about a month ago and I got to see how practice was performed, and based on my observations, I didn’t think there was anything very high risk.”
The Buccaneers decided to bring in an outside specialist to ensure that further MRSA cases were slowed and hopefully stopped all together.
NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith issued a statement on Friday in which he said the league needs to step up its practices to deal with this type of issue. According to Smith, “This underscores the need for a League-wide, comprehensive and standardized infectious disease protocol. It also calls for improved accountability measures on health and safety issues by the NFL over the clubs.”
The league and players union are already busily contacting team owners to ensure that all of their players receive the best attention possible during the MRSA scare.
Previously diagnosed with MRSA are kicker Lawrence Tynes and guard Carl Nicks. The third player has not come forward and under HIPAA laws the NFL and the NFLPA can not release that information to the general public.
Dr. Anderson did note that Tynes and Nicks did not contract the disease from the same source.