Residential Practice in COVID
Screening of Visitors and Staff
In order to minimize exposure and risk of disease transmission, visitors should be limited to only those who are essential, as much as possible. Information regarding newly implemented visitation and screening policies/procedures should be immediately communicated to families, agencies, and other potential visitors, especially with regard to any restrictions put in place. Routine screening of all visitors and staff members prior to entering the workplace should be implemented.
Visitors and staff should be screened for:
- Fever or chills
- Respiratory symptoms (such as cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell)
- Possible or known exposures to COVID-19
- Domestic and international travel to areas with high rates of COVID-19 (adjustments may be made based on current restrictions and travel guidelines set by state and federal agencies)
Identify a single entrance point and post signage at this site. Obtain a screening temperature prior to entrance for visitors and prior to the start and end of shifts for staff members. Document and keep record of this with a form such as the Staff Monitoring List we have included in this guide. Screening and documentation should be done in a confidential and HIPAA-compliant way to protect individual privacy. We recommend using a touchless thermometer and using the temperature of 100 degrees Fahrenheit as the cutoff.
In order to prioritize keeping staff safe, technology teams can migrate screening from paper to devices such as smart phones and tablets. This will also make tracking, tracing and data gathering more accessible and reliable. Agencies should develop platforms and screeners that work best for their needs; however, one suggestion includes answering a series of questions and upon being cleared, receiving a message on their device that state, “Employee Name is cleared for work today at X location” which can be displayed to security upon arrival to an office.