MO: Coronavirus Hits Nursing Home Run by Company Linked to Deaths in Kansas, Washington

The Kansas City Star

by Laura Bauer

Mar 27, 2020

Another nursing home in Missouri is dealing with a coronavirus outbreak after four residents and two workers tested positive.

The residents from Life Care Center of St. Louis are hospitalized and the workers are recovering at home, the director of the facility said in an email statement sent to The Star.

This is the third outbreak for Life Care Centers of America, which also owns the Washington state nursing home where 37 people have died and one in Kansas City, Kansas, which accounted for Kansas’ first coronavirus death.

The first resident from the St. Louis facility was hospitalized on March 18. Earlier this week, that person tested positive for the virus. The three additional patients began exhibiting symptoms and were transferred to the hospital on Monday and Tuesday of this week, Sean Buckley, executive director of the St. Louis facility, said in his statement.

“We have notified our families, residents and associates of these cases,” Buckley said. “The two associates who are ill are recovering at home and will only return to work when the specific guidelines from the health department are met regarding returning to work after COVID-19.”

The St. Louis facility continues to take precautions to keep the virus from spreading, Buckley said. Every employee is screened when they arrive at work. Temperatures are checked and if someone has a fever over 100.4, they are sent home and asked to contact their personal physician, the statement said.

Life Care Centers of America has facilities in 28 states, including seven in Kansas and 10 in Missouri.

The Kansas death was a man in his 70s who had been living at Life Care Center of Kansas City, Kansas. He died March 11. No one else at the KCK facility has tested positive for the virus.

Beecher Hunter, president of Life Care Centers of America, discussed how the pandemic has impacted his employees in a video posted on the company’s website. It appears to have been recorded before the St. Louis facility began dealing with the illness. Hunter only mentions cases at the Kirkland, Washington, facility and KCK.


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