From the Journals

NYC outbreak of Candida auris linked to 45% mortality



Mortality within 90 days of infection was 45% among 51 patients diagnosed with antibiotic-resistant Candida auris infections in a multihospital outbreak in New York City from 2012 to 2017.

Transmission is ongoing in health care facilities, primarily among patients with extensive health care exposures, according to a report published in Emerging Infectious Diseases.

A strain of Candida auris cultured in a petri dish. Shawn Lockhart/CDC

This image depicts a strain of Candida auris cultured in a petri dish.

“Intensive infection prevention and control efforts continue; the goals are delaying endemicity, preventing outbreaks within facilities, reducing transmission and geographic spread, and blunting the effect of C. auris in New York and the rest of the United States,” Eleanor Adams, MD, of the New York Health Department, and her colleagues wrote. “Among medically fragile patients in NYC who had a history of extensive contact with health care facilities, clinicians should include C. auris in the differential diagnosis for patients with symptoms compatible with bloodstream infection.”

In the intensive case-patient analysis conducted by the New York State Health Department, 21 cases were from seven hospitals in Brooklyn, 16 were from three hospitals and one private medical office in Queens, 12 were from five hospitals and one long-term acute care hospital in Manhattan, and 1 was from a hospital in the Bronx. The remaining clinical case was identified in a western New York hospital in a patient who had recently been admitted to an involved Brooklyn hospital.

Among these patients, 31 (61%) had resided in long-term care facilities immediately before being admitted to the hospital in which their infection was diagnosed, and 19 of these 31 resided in skilled nursing facilities with ventilator beds; 1 (2%) resided in a long-term acute care hospital; 5 (10%) had been transferred from another hospital; and 4 (8%) had traveled internationally within 5 years before diagnosis, according to the investigators.

Isolates from 50 patients (98%) were resistant to fluconazole and 13 (25%) were resistant to fluconazole and amphotericin B. No initial isolates were resistant to echinocandins, although subsequent isolates obtained from 3 persons who had received an echinocandin acquired resistance to it, according to the researchers. Whole-genome sequencing performed at The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicated that 50 of 51 isolates belonged to a South Asia clade; the remaining isolate was the only one susceptible to fluconazole.

The work was supported by the CDC. No disclosures were reported.

SOURCE: Adams E et al. Emerg Infect Dis. 2018 Sep 12; 24(10); ID: 18-0649.

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