09 Feb How Temperature Kiosks are Helping Stop the Spread of Future Viruses
Temperature scanning has quickly become commonplace in our COVID-19-ravaged world. With a virus that a person can spread for weeks before they even know they’re sick, and one that is highly contagious, a temperature check is one of the most critical ways to identify and quarantine those who are ill.
While we all look forward to getting the pandemic under control, the reality is that now that the COVID-19 virus exists, it will always exist. We’re likely to be managing scattered outbreaks of it for decades to come, even when a vaccine is available.
That alone makes it important for businesses to keep up with a temp monitoring system, but we can all but guarantee that these systems will help with future pandemics too. Let’s take a look at the pattern of pandemics in the past.
The US’s History of Pandemics
While there have been plenty of pandemics in other areas of the world, the U.S. alone has an extensive history of pandemics. In fact, there have been five serious pandemics in the past century.
First came the H1N1 virus pandemic of 1918, killing 675,000 Americans and 50 million people worldwide. The H2N2 virus pandemic of 1957 and 1958 came next with 116,000 US deaths. Soon after, we had the H2N3 virus pandemic of 1968 which killed 100,000 in the US. In 2009, we had a pandemic from a mutated version of H1N1 which killed 12,000 Americans, and that finally brings us to the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2.
These are merely the most serious pandemics, though you may remember other outbreaks that were also serious like the SARS outbreak of 2003. Five major pandemics within about 100 years is a scary number. Within that time, the longest we’ve gone without a major pandemic is 41 years. This means that we can safely expect to see at least one more major pandemic in our lifetimes.
How Pandemics Affect the Economy
On top of their high infection rates, pandemics affect all of us by impacting the economy. In fact, there are several ways pandemics damage our collective wallets.
We already know the U.S. has a problem with out-of-control healthcare costs. In the average year, around 137 million Americans struggle with medical debt.
When people have medical debt, they have less ability to stimulate the economy in other industries because all their money is going toward medical bills. On top of this, companies and providers throughout the healthcare industry end up with losses because some patients will never be able to pay their bills.
Lost Work for Illness
When large numbers of people get sick at the same time, it takes far too many out of the workforce than companies can accommodate. Not only do people miss work when they’re sick but people are sometimes forced to stay home to quarantine because they’ve been exposed to the virus.
On top of this, loved ones of those who fall ill often need to take time off to care for their loved ones, handle childcare, take their loved ones to doctors’ offices, and so on. This all adds up, reducing companies’ abilities to develop their products and make money.
We’ve already seen this in the COVID-19 pandemic, but during any pandemic, it’s common for businesses to close temporarily if they can’t stay open safely. This was especially true before the days of employee temperature check kiosks.
When businesses shut down, no one involved is making money and it puts added strain on the economy. This is especially true among luxury industries like tourism and live entertainment.
The U.S. doesn’t exist in a vacuum, and many U.S. businesses require supplies from other countries to keep functioning. However, travel restrictions are a common strategy to slow a pandemic’s spread. This slows or restricts our ability to trade with other nations, making our businesses less productive and reducing their revenue.
In general, the stock market drops during times of uncertainty. Few situations create more instability than a global pandemic. For all the reasons above, investors expect pandemics to hurt the economy so the markets take a downturn.
The good news is that these drops in the market tend to be short-lived, but the damage is done nonetheless.
How Temperature Kiosks Can Help
A touchless temperature scanner isn’t just a game-changer during COVID-19, but it’s likely to benefit you in the pandemics you can expect in the future too.
Keeping Criteria Broad
All the pandemics of the past have had their own list of common symptoms. A fever, however, is a sign of a wide range of illnesses, not just COVID-19.
This means a touchless temperature device can identify if your employees have any type of illness or infection, and many of these illnesses are contagious. By requiring employees with fevers to stay home, you prevent them from spreading the illness to their coworkers so you have one employee out sick, not 20.
Creating a Routine
One problem with the COVID-19 pandemic is that the virus had already spread so thoroughly before the US truly had an understanding of what it was, how far it had reached, and how contagious it was. If we had been using a body temp check system back then, we would have been able to minimize the spread from the start.
This means, with your touch free thermometer, you’ll be able to get a leg up on the next pandemic when it comes along. You’re also likely to have fewer employees getting sick during the flu season.
Taking Control Over Our Futures
Pandemics are a fact of life. Viruses and bacteria will mutate and shift, and every so often, one will become severe and start spreading around the world. A contactless thermometer allows you to prepare in advance and safeguard your workforce for everything from a normal flu season to COVID-19.
To get started, learn more about our touch-less body temperature scanner today.