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Infection Control News

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has sounded the alarm on Candida auris, an emerging global health threat. What is Candida auris? It’s a fungus that infects the bloodstream and was first identified in 2009 in Japan. Since then it has been detected in multiple countries across the globe including the US, where the majority of cases have been found in New York, New Jersey and Illinois.

Candida auris is so troubling because it is resistant to the normal cleaning measures taken by healthcare facilities. It can linger on surfaces and travel on medical equipment exposing others. It can also be passed person to person. C. auris is difficult to detect with standard testing. This means healthcare disinfection regimens are critical to prevent the transmission of C. auris and need to be closely re-examined by all facility managers.

C. auris is frequently resistant to one or more types of drugs used to address these infections making treatment extremely difficult. Some cases of this superbug have been resistant to all three classes of antifungal treatment.

The CDC currently recommends using products approved for Clostridioides difficile (List K ) to combat the spread of C. auris. The CDC also advises thorough daily and terminal cleaning in any areas patients receive treatment in addition to their rooms. Any devices which are shared across multiple patients should be similarly disinfected between uses.

One of these effective ways to disinfect for C.auris is to use a system called SteraMist. This rapidly deploy-able, environmentally safe system uses a fog like aerosol mist to disinfect on contact. It’s a List K EPA registered solution for use in health care and hospital settings. SteraMist also works as a disinfectant for MRSA, C.Diff, Norovirus, Staph and H1N1.

Who’s at risk for Candida Auris?

Those at highest risk are people with compromised immune systems or who have had an extended stay in a healthcare facility especially if they have any sort of tube or line entering the body. Also at risk are those with chronic diseases such as diabetes or those who have had surgery. Cases are not limited to certain age ranges. Most healthy people with normal immune systems seem less likely to develop an infection.

ICT: First in Infection Control and Biological Decontamination. Infection Control Technologies, (ICT) a division of Insurance Restoration Specialists, Inc. (IRS) is one of the nation’s leading Building Hygiene contractors. ICT provides Facility Hygiene Services and Emergency Decontamination for some of the nation’s most respected real estate and Risk Management Professionals, Health Care, Municipalities, Institutions, Food Safety, Transportation, and government organizations.