The researchers say that MRSA is a potentially lethal bug which has developed resistance to some antibiotics and is thus difficult to combat.
The conclusions of the study, which was published in the PloS Medicine journal, were drawn from a large study of the geographical location of different strains of MRSA across 26 European countries.
Hajo Grundmann, lead author of the study, said that MRSA appears to be spread by patients with on-going health problems who ping-pong between hospitals. He added that doctors should try to identify people who often move between hospitals and screen them for MRSA. This helps to eradicate MRSA.
The UK's Health Protection Agency (HPA) said that the Department of Health has established a policy across all NHS centres that all relevant elective admissions should be tested for the presence of MRSA. It has extended this policy to all admissions, including emergencies, by 2010/11.