The Wanaque Center for Nursing And Rehabilitation

Kevin R. Wexler/

8th Death Reported At New Jersey Pediatric Center Amid Viral Outbreak

October 26, 2018 - 6:53 pm

TRENTON, N.J. (WCBS 880/AP) -- Another young person has died amid a viral outbreak at a pediatric rehabilitation center in New Jersey.

The child, who had a respiratory illness, died late Friday afternoon, according to the Department of Health, but the outbreak of adenovirus at the Wanque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation has not yet been confirmed as the cause of the latest death.

A total of 23 children described as "medically fragile" have been infected. The most recent cases were diagnosed on Monday, they date back to Sept. 26.

Seven children who died of the virus were all in a respiratory unit where patients receive long-term help with breathing.

Adenovirus is usually pretty mild, but it can pose a threat to people with compromised immune systems.

The health department says the particular strain of adenovirus (#7) seems to be associated with communal living facilities.

A team of health officials has been at the health facility all week monitoring the infection. Some minor hand washing deficiencies were found at the facility over the weekend. Nurses at the center have complained about staffing problems and the facility has been cited in the past for failing to properly supervise patients and disinfect surfaces.

The health comissioner said as far as the source of the virus it can be difficult or impossible to know how it got there.

Meanwhile, admissions at the center have been halted and the outbreak won't be declared over until the center goes four weeks without any new cases.

(© 2018 WCBS 880. The Associated Press contributed to this report)