An eighth child died Friday afternoon following a monthlong adenovirus outbreak at a rehabilitation centre in New Jersey, the state's Department of Health said. The seventh death was announced the next day.
The facility, which includes a pediatric center, has been instructed not to admit new patients until the outbreak ends, the department said.
The infection can cause other illnesses, including pneumonia, diarrhea and bronchitis, the department said.
It is the latest death of an individual who had a confirmed case of adenovirus and had become ill before October 22.
The Wanaque Center, about 32 miles (50 km) northwest of NY, serves newborns to 22-year-olds who are "medically fragile".
The Health Department says an inspection team found "minor handwashing deficiencies", and they continue to work closely with the nursing and rehab center on infection control issues.
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The nine children who died in the outbreak that began September 26 range in age from toddler to young adult, with majority under age 18.
"Facility outbreaks are not always preventable, but in response to what we have seen in Wanaque, we are taking aggressive steps to minimize the chance they occur among the most vulnerable patients in New Jersey", Elnahal said in a statement.
The viruses, unlike the flu, are not seasonal and can cause illness throughout the year.
"Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face", she previously told CNN. These six types accounted for 85.5% of 1,497 laboratory-confirmed specimens reported during the time period.
And the viruses are still hard to diagnose since they're not typically included in a panel of tests used to identify specific viruses, according to Schaffner.
"People know patients are being held prisoner, but they probably think they have bigger battles in public health to fight, so they just have to let this go", Sophie Harman, a global health expert at Queen Mary University of London, said.