Candida auris (C. auris) is a drug-resistant germ that can spread in hospitals and nursing homes. It is becoming more common around the world, including the U.S. About half of those diagnosed in the U.S. are NYC area residents. Infections usually occur in patients who have been admitted to a hospital or nursing home for another reason and often have other serious medical conditions.
C. auris can infect different parts of the body, including the blood, urine or skin. Symptoms are different depending on the location of the infection.
Patients who are sick with a C. auris infection can become colonized with C. auris, meaning that they have C. auris on their body after treatment. Patients who come in contact with C. auris, can become colonized without having any symptoms. C. auris can spread from a colonized person to other people and nearby objects. There is no recommended treatment for patients colonized with C. auris.
While C. auris outbreaks are a serious concern in hospitals and nursing homes, there is no known risk to the public. Healthy people have a small chance of becoming colonized or infected with C. auris. Healthy people colonized with C. auris do not become infected. There is no need for healthy people to get tested for C. auris. Rarely, patients colonized with C. auris can develop a C. auris infection if they have an existing serious illness or condition. People most at risk of becoming colonized and infected with C. auris include those who:
C. auris is difficult to treat because it can be hard to identify and can be resistant to medicines. Infections are serious and need to be treated in the hospital.
If you live with a person colonized with C. auris, wash your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer regularly.
If you tested positive for C. auris, tell your health care provider so they can take the appropriate infection control precautions, and if you are admitted to a hospital or nursing home, ask your provider whether you should be tested for C. auris again.