Nevada ‘Superbug’ Sparks Alarm Amongst Official

Candida auris, also known as C. auris, is a fungus discovered in 42 Nevada healthcare facilities, with the highest case counts coming from Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center in Las Vegas. The CDC has classified C. auris as an “urgent” threat this year, along with four other superbugs, due to the ineffectiveness of currently available treatments. There were 2,377 confirmed cases and 5,754 screening/colonization cases in the United States in 2022, including 384 confirmed cases in Nevada.

According to CDC data from April of this year, Nevada accounted for 16 percent of all cases of C. auris in the United States. But new studies show that the number of incidents keeps rising. Records were broken in Nevada in September and October; however, information for the preceding three months may be missing.

There have been 1,313 instances recorded in Nevada in 2023, 492 considered “clinical” cases and 821 considered “colonization” cases. Since a single host might have both a colonized case and a clinical case, the total number of cases does not correspond to the number of afflicted persons. More than 60% of all instances involve colonization, whereas less than 40% include clinical settings. Since November of 2022, the total number of cases has increased by 193%.

Because the fungus may live on surfaces and enter the circulation during invasive operations, patients who need catheters are at a higher risk of infection. Men are diagnosed with C. auris more commonly than women, with roughly 60% of the cases being men. Most instances, or almost 87%, occur in those older than 50.

The number of colonization cases has increased quicker than clinical cases, with contributions from three nursing homes. More than a hundred instances of colonization were found at Kindred Hospital Flamingo and two locations of Horizon Specialty Hospital. Clinical cases involving infections are more common in hospitals than colonization cases because of their greater severity.

California, Florida, New York, Illinois, and Texas were among the most afflicted, while instances were documented in 28 states and the District of Columbia.

The CDC emphasizes that state and local health department case information is voluntarily given and can change based on investigations, but as of November 4th, data reveals 2,516 clinical and 1,564 screening cases of C. auris had been recorded in the U.S.