The COVID-19 pandemic has brought industry operations at a halt. The immediate temporary lockdown became a necessary protocol for everyone to follow. The massive use of PPE gear worldwide has caused a shortage of PPE and other medical supplies in many countries, especially the USA. The Federal Emergency Management Agency, under the direction of President Donald Trump, created an airlift to get emergency supplies of PPE from all over the world. Meanwhile, every PPE manufacturing company in USA was under intense pressure to produce medical-grade PPE on a large-scale and distribute them with the help of local PPE suppliers in USA, all in an effort to ease shortages.
But now, when the present-day situations are changing and industry prepares to resume all operations, all workplaces must take necessary precautions and proper care to ensure the safety of all employees and contain the spread of the coronavirus. Companies may tie-up with personal protective equipment suppliers to purchase PPE gears for their employees to be used while they’re working. Besides companies should also implement thermal screening and fever detection techniques at the entrance of the facility
Install Thermal Cameras at the Workplace
Organizations can install thermal cameras with built-in fever detection mode and automatic face recognition features that help the user to perform mass scanning of people. These cameras can be installed right at the entrance of the premises over a tripod coupled with a separate LED display connected via HDMI cable. This setup can be used as a large virtual screen to monitor the scan results of employees or can be manually handled by a staff member to inspect the entrants.
While screening, the surface temperature of the skin is recorded and an alarm triggers if the temperature is more than the threshold value that is approximately equal to or above 99.5⁰ F. This helps in identifying the one with high body surface temperature and isolating them from others for further medical investigations.
Use No-contact Thermometers
A thermal screening of the employees should be done at the entrances of the premises using a no-contact thermometer. This medical device has been designed to measure the body temperature of a person regardless of room temperature. As one of the major symptoms of COVId-19 is high body temperature, this thermometer can be useful in screening people for the probability of infection. This hand-held device can check the body temperature of individuals from a distance of 5 centimeters. It comes with a digital display and has the ability to select degree C or degree F.
You should consider purchasing thermal-screening devices only from authorized personal protective equipment suppliers so that you’re assured of their quality.
How to Implement Body Temperature Screening?
To make sure that the screening is conducted safely, effectively, and in compliance with privacy standards, employers should develop a protocol that incorporates the following:
1. You may retain a third-party vendor to perform body temperature screening on employees. In case it’s not possible, make sure the staff member who is conducting temperature screening is well-trained in using the non-contact temperature scanner and has an understanding of the key factors apart from COVID-19 that could affect its reading.
2. The tester should be provided with complete PPE gear including surgical gloves, face masks, and a lab coat or disposable coat. Also, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer must be accessible in areas where screening is conducted.
3. The tester must take the consent of the employees for temperature screening. If anyone refuses to be tested, he/she won’t be allowed to enter the workplace as their presence can make other employees vulnerable to health risks.
4. Additionally, the tester must also inquire about the health status of the employees to find out if anyone is exhibiting any flu-like symptoms such as fever, shortness of breath, or coughing or is otherwise not feeling well. The tester must also ask if the employee has had come in close contact with anyone in the past 14 days who has been tested or suspected to be COVID+.
5. If possible, the investigation of the employees should be done in a private or semi-private area, out of the sight of and earshot of the other employees or visitors.
6. The screening results must not be collected, recorded, stored, used, or disclosed for any purpose expect to know whether the employee should be permitted to enter the workplace.
7. Employees having temperatures at or above 38˚C (100.4˚F), or the one who answers ‘Yes’ to any of the screening questions should be advised to return home, self-quarantine, and discuss with their family doctor, or local public health authority about their symptoms, treatment options, self-isolation requirements, and for an assessment regarding the next steps to take.
8. Employees should consider partnering with an authorized PPE manufacturing company in USA to ensure the genuineness of products, and local PPE suppliers in USA for an adequate supply of PPE.
As it is said ‘safety comes with the responsibility’, employers must take necessary preventive measures to protect their workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Implementation of thermal screening has become the need of the hour and therefore it becomes the responsibility of administrative staff, facility management, transportation authorities, decision-makers, regional and Public Health Care and security authorities, HSC officer of the production plant, institutional heads to ensure the health and safety of their workers during the pandemic.
Furthermore, employees must also consider purchasing PPE gear from authorized personal protective equipment suppliers. Due to the dire shortage of PPE in USA, numerous PPE suppliers in USA emerged lately in order to produce PPE on a large-scale and help people in the fight against COVID-19. However, there are several online PPE suppliers in USA that have reported to be scams or selling low-quality PPE at higher prices. Therefore, before purchasing PPE online in bulk, make sure you do proper research and choose an authorized PPE manufacturing company in USA to avoid scams or buying low-quality products.