Coronavirus: Palm Beach County to Screen Employee Temperatures

Palm Beach County employees and contractors will have to be screened before gaining entry to county buildings, starting June 1.

Employees and contractors entering all Palm Beach County government buildings must first have their temperature taken and answer health-related questions.

That won’t apply to the general public, though.

The mandate begins Monday, more than two months after a similar protocol was put in place at the county’s Emergency Operations Center on South Military Trail, where key officials gather daily to receive updates and make pandemic-response decisions.

“This screening is intended to identify employees and contractors showing fever, which is one of several common symptoms associated with COVID-19 illness. At no time should temperatures of the public be taken,” read a memo sent Friday by Risk Management Director Scott Marting to the county’s 6,000 employees.

It was not immediately clear why the public would not be screened. County Administrator Verdenia Baker could not be reached for comment Wednesday morning.

Since the beginning of March, 34 county employees have tested positive for the coronavirus, and another 67 were potentially exposed by those employees. More than 560 employees were placed on administrative leave.

Temperature screening does not catch virus-carriers who aren’t suffering symptoms of the deadly disease, a point made in the memo.

Traffic to the building in West Palm Beach dropped significantly in March when the tax collector’s first-floor office closed. The tax collector announced the expansion of its appointment-only services also beginning Monday, where customers are required to wear masks.

The county has limited the number of people attending county commission meetings to assure two seats between visitors. But the county does not require people at these meetings to wear masks.

Employees and county contractors who are allowed in will get a color-coded wristband. Contractors are defined as vendors or contracted employees who are conducting business for the county.

Employees who don’t pass the screening will be put on paid administrative leave, or will have to use sick leave, until they’re cleared to come back to work.

The use of paid time off was a point of concern for healthy employees who wanted to work from home, having no recourse but to use sick or vacation time if they wanted to stay out of the office. In April, the county allowed employees 65 and older and those with underlying medical conditions to work from home. Where possible, teleworking will continue to be available for all county employees, a spokeswoman said.

Employees also must wear facial coverings if they can’t stay more than six feet from others, and will be encouraged to frequently wash or sanitize their hands.

Department supervisors will be in charge of making sure temperatures are taken every day.

The county may be enforcing this new procedure for months, if not longer, a fact indicated in a memo sent to department heads, which said the cost to hire a contractor to screen employees would be “too great to allow for the sustainability of the program long term (30-60 days) due to the large number of physical locations that would need coverage.”

Automated Temperature Screening is effortless and creates a safe trusted environment that eases the tension, fear, and anxiety people often feel after a pandemic. 

Automated Pass Management Temperature Screening Device. This device requires no physical interaction. Simply look at the camera and get the temperature in 1 second. Facial recognition checks-in and maintains records of the individual temperatures. Designed to help protect the health and safety of both employees and guests by preventing anyone with a temperature from entering a facility. it’s the perfect solution for office buildings, warehouses, schools, government buildings, museums, sports arenas, theme parks, movie theaters, gyms, rail stations, hotels, restaurants, or practically any public venue.

Protect your employees and customers with minimal distraction and effort.

TempSafe Technology makes temperature screening easy. Explore our site to learn more about our Temperature Screening products.

Temperature Screening Solution

Safely screen employees and visitors for high temperature as they walk into a building or a defined area. The system can prevent people from entering if the pre-defined temperature threshold is exceeded or are not wearing a mask, and trigger an alarm.

  • Provides fast and accurate body-temperature measurement
  • Detects if a protective mask is being worn
  • Users can be denied door or system access if a high temperature or no mask is detected
  • Alarm options include strobe light, siren and popup on PC workstation 
  • Saves data in personnel safety log and verifies records.
  • Data, alerts and reporting available

The solution combines a thermal camera and our latest face, palm and fingerprint recognition technology for employee authentication, providing advanced security and convenience, all on a single affordable device.

Used to help screen potentially affected people in the workplace and public venues:

Schools, airports, hospitals, construction sites, correctional institutions, government and office buildings

No Touch Biometric Reader

Embedded face & palm recognition sensor provides 100% hands-free hygienic user authentication.

  • Used for various applications including Access Control, Time & Attendance, Visitor Management, Event Management & more
  • User authentication read range up to 8 feet
  • Face verification possible while wearing protective mask (Palm recognition advised while wearing mask)
  • Dual-lens IR & VL camera recognizes faces in both total darkness and bright sunlight 
  • Access Levels, Groups, Holidays, DST, Duress Mode (password), Anti-Passback, Record Query
  • Interfaces with
    • KeyTracer Key Control Systems
    • AssetTracer Smart Locker Systems
    • Various Access Control Systems