First Case of EV-D68 in Sussex County
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 17, 2014 Newton, NJ - The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed New Jersey's first case of enterovirus D68 (EV-D68). Sussex County officials have reported that the confirmed results were from a resident of the county. EV-D68 is a potentially serious respiratory illness more likely found in infants and children, sometimes resulting in hospitalization. The child has since improved and has been discharged
Enteroviruses are common viruses, causing 10-15 million infections each year. Most people infected with enterovirus have no symptoms or only mild symptoms, but some infections can result in hospitalization due to their serious nature.
Herbert Yardley, Administrator/Health Officer of the Sussex County Department of Environmental and Public Health Services, understands the concerns of our County's residents. "We are continuing to work closely with the New Jersey Department of Health to monitor the situation," Mr. Yardley stated.
Enteroviruses are transmitted through close contact with an infected person, or by touching objects or surfaces that are contaminated with the virus and then touching the mouth, nose, or eyes. Answers to frequently asked questions about enteroviruses and EV-D68 can be found at: http://www.nj.gov/health/cd/documents/faq/ev_faq.pdf
New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) has advised parents and health care providers to be aware of the signs and symptoms of this respiratory illness with symptoms that range from mild to severe. The symptoms of EV-D68 can include upper respiratory symptoms such as cough, runny nose, sneezing and body/muscle aches and possibly low-grade fever.
Infected individuals generally recover on their own without incident. However, some individuals, especially those with weakened immune systems or underlying medical conditions, such as asthma, may experience severe complications. Contact your health care provider right away if you, or your child, experience cold like symptoms with difficulty breathing.
The preventive steps people can take to avoid becoming ill and the treatment are similar to those of most illnesses like the flu. To help protect yourself and others from enterovirus infections:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water
- Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid close contact (kissing, touching, sharing eating utensils and shaking hands) with people who are sick
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces, such as door knobs and toys
- Stay home when sick and call your healthcare provider
- Use good respiratory hygiene; coughing and sneezing into a tissue or elbow and properly disposing of tissues.
There is no vaccine or specific antiviral medication for enterovirus infections. Prevention, including good hand hygiene, is your best defense against getting infected.
For additional information, visit New Jersey Department of Health at www.nj.gov/health
or Sussex County Department of Environmental and Public Health Services at www.sussex.nj.us/health.