New NJ law requires response plans after outbreak that left 11 children dead

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed into law a measure requiring certain long-term care facilities to submit outbreak response plans to the state.

Murphy on Thursday signed the bill in response to the deaths of 11 children last year at the Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation.

One staff member and 36 residents, ranging in age from toddlers to teens, were diagnosed with a severe strain of adenovirus in the outbreak at the facility in Haskell. Eleven children died.

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The strain found in the rehab center outbreak is among the more potent types and sometimes causes more serious respiratory illness. The children at the facility all had serious underlying health conditions.

The law requires centers with ventilator-dependent residents to submit plans to the Health Department within six months.