The first cases of isolation of Staphylococcus aureus resistant to methicillin in France were published in 1962. However, until recently, very few epidemiological studies or attempts to control the epidemic have been done in France. In this article, we present the results of a prospective study performed during a 3-month period in 27 hospitals of the Région des Pays de la Loire. Among the 94,605 hospitalized patients included in the study, 0.45% (427) developed methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections, the incidence rate ranging from 0% to 1.2%. Thirty-four percent of MRSA-infected patients were 80 years old or older, 30% had been transferred from another service and 19% from another hospital, 56% were hospitalized at least once during the previous year, MRSA had been isolated at least once previously in 18% of MRSA-infected patients, 19% died, 16% were transferred to another service and 11% to another hospital, and only 32% were discharged to their homes. A poor compliance to contact isolation precautions was observed in all hospitals: 46% of MRSA-infected patients were hospitalized in a private room; gloves, masks, and gowns were worn for the care of 63.4%, 14%, and 42.5% of MRSA-infected patients, respectively; and handwashing was feasible in the rooms of 52% of the patients.