COVID 102020

Active COVID-19 cases in Franklin County long-term care facilities are at an all-time high, with a total of 47. Previously, the record high was 45, reported by the health department April 23.

Eric Eoloff, president of Mercy Hospital Washington, said the hospital community is extremely concerned about the recent spike in COVID-19 cases in area nursing homes.

“These facilities care for our elders and those with underlying health conditions,” Eoloff wrote in an email Tuesday morning. “Our experience dealing with spikes last spring in the long-term care community was that many were hospitalized and didn’t return to their homes. Or if they did, their loved ones were not allowed in to comfort them in their time of sickness or at the time of their passing. Bottom line is, these are the last places we want COVID to spread.”

The Missourian reached out to several area nursing homes in an attempt to confirm where any outbreaks were occurring.

Stacy Fierge, director of nursing at Victorian Place, said the senior living facility does not have any COVID cases. Laura Voelkerding, director of nursing at Grandview Healthcare Center, reported it had not experienced a major outbreak but declined to confirm or deny whether it had any cases. Cedarcrest Manor’s Administrator Paula Hanson would not confirm or deny whether the facility is experiencing an outbreak.

Attempts to reach Mercy health care workers connected to the nursing homes were also unsuccessful Tuesday morning.

Meanwhile, there are 18 Franklin County residents hospitalized due to COVID-19 between Mercy Hospital Washington and Missouri Baptist in Sullivan.

“We continue to care for a large number of patients who are hospitalized with COVID-19,” Eoloff  said. “Of the 14 COVID patients with us today, 12 are residents of Franklin County. They range in age from 36 to 91 years old. Two of the patients have been with us for two weeks now. We’re doing everything we can to help them beat this virus.”

The total number of COVID-19 cases in Franklin County to date is 2,436; deaths due to COVID-19 complications is 36.

Since March, Franklin County residents who have died of the virus include: two men and three women in their 60s; five men and four women in their 70s; eight men and five women in their 80s; and one man and eight women in their 90s.

As of Tuesday, Oct. 20, the 10-day rolling total stands at 360, with the testing positivity rate over the last 14 days at 8.49 percent and the 14-day new case average at 33.5, according to the health department.

Statewide, the total number of COVID-19 cases since March stands at 158,101. The number of deaths in Missouri due to COVID-19 complications is 2,590.