Cases of Deadly Fungus in Nursing Homes
In the spring of this year, it was announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that infections of the deadly fungus, Candida auris (C. auris) continued to increase in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. Nursing homes in Tampa and throughout the country are still feeling the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Understaffing and overworked employees are still finding it difficult to maintain healthy environments that promote health and safety and help them avoid complications such as infections.
Still, a shortage of staff members is no excuse for allowing infections such as C. auris to run rampant in nursing homes. If your loved one has suffered harm due to this potentially deadly infection, our Tampa sepsis and infections attorney explains how to obtain the compensation you need below.
What is C. auris?
Often called a ‘super fungus,’ Candida auris is a yeast infection that is extremely resistant to many common antibiotics. This resistance to antibiotics not only makes it harder to treat infected nursing home residents, but it also makes it much easier for the infection to spread. C. auris is also very difficult to detect with standard laboratory tests, which also promotes the spread of the infection.
When fungus comes into contact with an open wound, it can result in a severe infection. Individuals in nursing homes are at a far greater risk of suffering from the infection. Elderly individuals often have weaker immune systems, which make it harder for nursing home patients to fight the infection once the fungus enters their system.
How Do Nursing Home Residents Contract C. auris?
Again, nursing home residents can contract an infection when an open sore comes into contact with the fungus or when medical devices are not properly sanitized. Residents who have limited mobility must be rotated regularly to prevent bedsores from forming. Bedsores are open wounds and they are one of the main ways nursing home residents contract the fungus.
Another common way nursing home residents contract the fungus is through equipment that is not properly sterilized. This equipment includes catheters, feeding tubes, and breathing apparatuses.
What Should Nursing Homes Do to Prevent the Spread?
It is very difficult to prevent the spread of C. auris, but there are certain measures nursing home residents should take to make sure everyone is kept safe. All nursing home staff members should follow recommended sanitation protocols, such as following proper hand washing procedures. New residents should also always be screened for many different types of infections, including C. auris. Other preventative measures include:
- Regularly disinfecting equipment and surfaces,
- Isolating infected residents so the fungus does not spread,
- Notifying facilities residents are being transferred to that a resident is infected, and
- Using gloves, masks, eye protection, and other personal protection equipment at all times.
Call Our Sepsis and Infections Attorney in Tampa for a Free Consultation
C. Auris is a very serious infection and in the most tragic of cases, it can be fatal. At Kohn Law, our Tampa sepsis and infections attorney can help you and your family claim the compensation you need to cover medical bills, pain and suffering, and other losses. Call us now at 813-428-8504 or contact us online to request a free consultation and to learn more.