Ninth Child Dies in Virus Outbreak at NJ Center

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An eighth child's death on Friday afternoon was associated with the outbreak, Leusner said.

The highly contagious adenovirus poses little to risk to healthy people. They are common in places with large groups of children, such as child-care settings, schools and summer camps.

The new diagnosis brings the total number of cases at the facility to 25. It is believed that the individuals who became ill contracted the virus between September 26 and October 22.

A sign for the Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation in New Jersey, where six children died from an outbreak of adenovirus.

The timing of the deaths is not clear. Wednesday the department announced an additional child death.

The state health department has sent a team of investigators to the facility to determine the cause of the outbreak.

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"Unfortunately, the particular strain of adenovirus (#7) in this outbreak is affecting medically fragile children with severely compromised immune systems", Kirgan said.

Those affected at the Wanaque center range in age from toddlers to young adults. "Often people become ill for many reasons, especially these medically fragile children who had respiratory problems as part of their underlying medical conditions", he said. They also note this strain has been particularly associated with disease in communal living facilities. The Health Professionals and Allied Employees (HPAE) said the shortages may have led to "poor infection control practices".

Rowena Bautista, the administrator of the Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation, said Thursday in a statement the community "feels a tremendous sense of loss". Specifically, it was determined that the facility failed to provide a clean and home-like environment for their residents. The infection spreads like the common cold and most patients recover after a brief illness.

The bacterium can cause pneumonia or serious blood or wound infections.

There have been 19 cases of adenovirus at the centre. Adenoviruses usually just cause mild illnesses.

This remains the last day when a patient showed new symptoms. And while a vaccine exists, it's available only to military recruits. The CDC is also investigating the outbreak.