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 Human scabies is caused by infestation of the skin by the microscopic mite Sarcoptes scabiei var. hominis.  These mites are passed from person-to-person through direct, prolonged skin contact, especially to household members and sexual contacts, or in crowded conditions such as nursing homes and prisons.  A more severe form of scabies called crusted or Norwegian scabies can affect immunocompromised or debilitated persons.  Norwegian scabies is very contagious because of the high number of mites involved in infection.

Since scabies is an infestation, not an infection, it is NOT reportable as a communicable disease to OCHCA Epidemiology, unless associated with an outbreak.  Outbreaks should be reported immediately by phone (714-834-8180) to OCHCA Epidemiology.


Healthcare Professionals

For more information, see the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website

Last reviewed December 21, 2018