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Statement From Camp Simcha Regarding Temporary Closure Due To Flu Outbreak

On the advice of its medical director, Dr. Peter Steinherz, and its associate medical director, Dr. Leonard Wexler, both leading pediatric oncologists at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Chai Lifeline has decided to conclude the current Camp Simcha session five days early.

Several children were diagnosed with viral flu influenza. They were immediately isolated from the rest of the camp population and they have already returned home. The final two sessions of camp have not been affected. The next session will begin on August 2.

“The medical directors have made this decision for the safety of all campers,” said Rabbi Simcha Scholar, executive vice president of Chai Lifeline. “Children fighting cancer have weakened immune systems, and our first priority is to safeguard their health. While no children are in danger, the medical staff has taken the prudent step of ending this session to ensure that no other children are exposed to the flu.”

While they are undoubtedly sad about missing even one day of camp, Camp Simcha’s campers will continue to find joy and camaraderie during Chai Lifeline’s year-round activities and programs and their ongoing friendships with counselors and bunkmates.

Individuals with questions about campers can call the Camp Simcha office, 845 856-1432. Please direct media and other inquiries to Chai Lifeline, 212 465-1300.


4 Responses

  1. I was a counselor at Camp Simcha the summer of the fire.(the main dining hall and kitchen burnt down in the middle of the night) I was sure they were going to end camp immediately!
    Within 12 hours they had set up a new kitchen and dining hall.

    I am sure Dr. Steinherz (one of the 36 IMHO) did not make this decision lightly. If there was a way to keep camp open, he would have.

    My heart goes out to the campers who had to go home early, I know how much they look forward to camp all year long, and even ending one day early would be crushing.

    May hashem bless all the camplers with a refuah shelema and let them ALL return to camp next year!

  2. im a waiter in camp sitting here with 6 staff members, and were all very sad here in camp.but like everything else “it’s all about the kids”

  3. so sad. this is what they wait for they whole year. Their dreams shattered. On the otherhand, it shows a hugely responsible decision which I’m sure was hard for CS to make on the part of the wellbeing and health of their campers.

  4. I feel SO bad for all those kids!!! They wait all year for camp and now its being cut short!!! But don’t get me wrong; i understand why they are doing it.

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