An emerging, drug-resistant yeast infection new to the U.S. has reportedly killed four in Collin County, but county officials said the general public is not at risk.
Candida auris causes invasive infections and can be transmitted in health care settings, a news release from Collin County Health Care Services said. Infections from candida auris are said to be difficult to treat.
Recently, two Collin County area healthcare facilities saw cases of drug-resistant variants of candida auris, which the release said resulted in four deaths. However, CCHCS officials pointed to information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and gave no indication that generally healthy individuals should fear infection.
“The general public is not at risk of contracting candida auris,” county epidemiologists said to CCHCS spokesperson Darrell Willis II. “Properly following basic infection control practices ... and use of proper disinfectants will prevent the spread of candida auris within a facility.”
Symptoms may not be noticeable, according to the CDC, because patients with a candida auris infection are often already sick in the hospital with another serious illness or condition. The yeast mainly affects those who already have many medical problems, those with frequent hospital stays or those who live in nursing homes, CDC guidelines indicate.
Candida auris became reportable in Texas on Jan. 5, according to the release. CCHCS is working with the Texas Department of State Health Services and the CDC to control the spread of candida auris.
Steps county officials said they are taking include notifying facilities of positive results, reviewing infection control procedures at facilities and conducting laboratory surveillance to identify new cases.