Dramatic turnaround for St. Charles nursing home that suffered COVID outbreak last year


ST. CHARLES, Mo. – FOX 2 went back to the St. Charles nursing home Wednesday that became a focal point for COVID-19 early in the pandemic.

There’s been dramatic change since an outbreak claimed more than two-dozen lives at the Frontier Health and Rehab home.

Residency is surging. Frontier is COVID free.

Healthy workers had to be brought in from other homes at the height of the outbreak in the spring. Sixty-seven residents total tested positive for COVID along with 18 workers, according to a spokeswoman. Twenty-five residents died.

Amid fears, residency, which is typically more than 100, dropped into the 60s at one point, new Frontier administrator Michael O’Dea said.

“With all that’s going on, that (outbreak) could have happened anywhere through St. Louis, through the whole country. They figured it out here,” O’Dea said.

Residents are tested once-a- eek. Workers are tested twice-a-week. There have been no positive cases since August. People are moving in again.

“It was a courageous story here. It was great see things turn around,” O’Dea said. “When we ended 2020 on Dec. 31, I told the staff who went through it all, my wish for them is that when we get to summer time and things are really humming here, we can say, ‘Boy, you know what? It was worth it all’.”

There 102 residents there, now. A multi-million-dollar renovation is planned. After the toughest of times, things at Frontier are humming, indeed.

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