CDC Update: Candida Auris – December 2017

Yikes – no explanation for the spread by state…

Credit CDC


In June of last year the CDC issued a Clinical Alert to U.S. Health care facilities about the Global Emergence of Invasive Infections Caused by the Multidrug-Resistant Yeast Candida auris.

C. auris is an emerging fungal pathogen that was first isolated in Japan in 2009. It was initially found in the discharge from a patient’s external ear (hence the name `auris’).  Retrospective analysis has traced this fungal infection back over 20 years.

Since then the CDC and public health entities have been monitoring an increasing number of cases (and hospital clusters) in the United States and abroad, generally involving bloodstream infections, wound infections or otitis (see November Update).

Adding to the concern:

  1. C. auris infections have a high fatality rate
  2. The strain appears to be resistant to multiple classes of anti-fungals  
  3. This strain is unusually persistent on fomites in healthcare environments.
  4. And it can be difficult for labs to differentiate it from other Candida strains

The CDC has updated their C. Auris surveillance page, where they show – as of November 30th – 174 confirmed cases and 29 probable cases, across 10 states.

The number of colonized asymptomatic cases detected by targeted screening in four states has risen to 257  (see FAQ for Patients and Family Members).


Last August the CDC promoted the first ever Fungal Disease Awareness Week, and presented a COCA call webinar called Tackling an Invasive, Emerging, Multi-drug Resistant Yeast: Candida auris — What Healthcare Providers Need to Know, which is now archived and available online.

CIDRAP’s Antimicrobial Stewardship Project (ASP) also held an hour long webinar (see below), which is now available on the CIDRAPASP Youtube channel.

 (Note: you’ll find more than a dozen other on-topic videos available on this channel as well).

For more on this emerging fungal pathogen, you may wish peruse the CDC’s dedicated web page:

And for some older blogs on the topic, you may wish to revisit: