Transcript for What to know about potentially ‘deadly’ fungus spreading through health facilities
- Maybe you've heard the headline about a new and rapidly spreading resistant type of yeast. This is not your mother or grandmother's yeast infection, you guys. We're talking about Candida auris. It's being described by the Centers for Disease Control as an urgent threat to public health.
And we've been following its increase over the last couple of years in this country. What's important about this strain of Candida, or this strain of yeast, is that it is resistant to the tools in our toolbox, which are antifungal medications. And it is spread person to person. At this time, the vulnerable population for this type of resistant and potentially fatal yeast infection are really hospitalized people who are in long-term care facilities, who have indwelling catheters, or even who are intubated or on ventilators long-term.
So in terms of prevention for this strain of yeast or Candida, really, for the general population, right now, it's just about awareness and following the science. For people who are hospitalized or in long-term care facilities, again, we can't emphasize it enough-- hand hygiene, so important. And again, for all of us, something we can do is to not overuse or abuse or misuse certain types of medications.
So only take an antibiotic when warranted for a certain type of bacterial infection. And for the general population of women who suffer from common yeast infections, usually, that's from a relative of this strain of yeast-- Candida albicans, sometimes Candida glabrata. Those are still generally respond to the antifungal medications that we have in the outpatient setting.
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