Persistent and multi-drug resistant, the new candida auris superbug is not a pandemic yet, and despite fears of its rampant onset, is not going to be.
Worrying because unlike most funguses, it seems to spread from person to person – a yeast that colonises the skin and therefore transfers on contact.
It’s also nosocomial, particularly present in hospitals where it targets the already ill – those patients with surgical incisions or intravenous feeds, apertures in the body that provide the way in.
That makes it a real hazard to patients and health care givers – easily contaminating clothing, linen, bedrails, chairs, catheters and all kinds of surrounding equipment. A “touch it if you dare” situation requiring isolation if possible – a strain on already stretched NHS resources.
Hard to come clean
To make things more difficult, candida auris is also resilient against the usual cleaning agents. Recommended is chlorine-based treatment at 1,000ppm dilution – as strong as can be risked without harming surroundings.
Even so, the bug persists, frequently demanding action the hard way – repeated deep cleans and the closing down of ward and ICU facilities among the 35 hospitals affected.
One of them however knows it’s got the bug beaten – showing the way for others to get themselves candida auris-free. We can’t tell which hospital it is, as all work of this nature has to be confidential.
Suffice it to say though, that after two deep cleans and much worry, one particular hospital has solved the problem overnight and banished candida auris from its corridors.
Clearing up with mist
Misting up affected areas with ionised hydrogen peroxide – a quick and effective way to neutralise ALL germs immediately.
This process does require facilities to be completely vacated – though it is possible to section off areas with protective PVC sheeting and handle the job piecemeal.
Once clear, the hydrogen peroxide is released into the air, to spread in all directions and against all surfaces. The ionising forces wide dispersal and electrostatic attraction to pathogens – clamping to them like magnets and ripping them apart by oxidising them.
The hospital involved made one phone call and 24 hours later the job was done – all clear and back to normal, ready for the onset of winter. No candida auris, no anything – sterilised, safe and secure.