2 Harborview patients test positive for Candida auris

Harborview Medical Center is working closely with Public Health – Seattle & King County.

Media Contact: Susan Gregg - sghanson@uw.edu, 206-390-3226

UPDATE: As of July 1, 2024, two additional Harborview patients have tested positive for Candida auris.


Two patients at Harborview Medical Center recently tested positive for Candida auris, a drug resistant fungus that has become increasingly common throughout the United States and the rest of the world.  

 Both patients are colonized with the fungus and are in satisfactory condition. While Candida auris is detectable on their body, it is not currently causing an infection or any disease in either person.   

Harborview is partnering with Public Health – Seattle & King County and will be performing additional screening for Candida auris in select patients.    

 “Healthy people typically do not need to worry about Candida auris infections. The risk is primarily for patients at the hospital for a long time and who need medical interventions like breathing tubes, feeding tubes or urinary catheters,” said Dr. Eric Chow, chief of Communicable Disease Epidemiology for Public Health – Seattle & King County.  

Chow added, “When cases were identified, Harborview acted quickly to enhance existing infection control measures and to implement special cleaning and disinfection to prevent spread of C. auris. We are working closely with Harborview on additional screening that may identify other cases.  

“Harborview was an early partner in setting up a screening system for people who may be at higher risk. We expect that as more healthcare organizations take the important step of screening higher risk individuals, like Harborview has done, we will see more cases.”  

Candida auris is transmitted by direct physical contact or contact with contaminated surfaces, and it is not spread through the air. It currently poses a low risk to healthcare personnel and visitors, as it primarily affects individuals receiving complex medical care.   

 Our providers and staff are taking great care to ensure a safe hospital environment for all of our patients. For more information about Candida auris, visit the CDC Candida auris website and the Washington State Department of Health FAQ.   


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Tags:infectionsHarborview Medical Centerpublic health

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