Willapa Medical Clinic Deploys Touchless Temperature-Check Kiosk To Limit Exposure in Waiting Rooms

Willapa Medical Clinic — formerly Pacific Family Health Center — in South Bend, Washington, was looking for a solution to speed up registration and smooth out the check-in process at the office, helping to limit COVID-19 exposure as much as possible.

The rural doctors' office selected a self-service, touchless solution to quickly scan incoming patients and guests for fevers.

"As a medical provider, we have to see patients who are potentially infected — whether it's with COVID-19 or the flu — while protecting those waiting to be seen," said Mary McAllister, rural health clinic manager at Willapa Medical Clinic. Before implementing the touchless solution, the Clinic's staff was reaching through the registration window to take everyone's temperature with a tympanic thermometer. "It was cumbersome and required a great deal of contact. With the temperature kiosks, they can scan themselves right when they walk in. This has sped up our registration process and made it easier for our aging patients who we sometimes struggled to reach," added McAllister.

Patients walk up to the tablet, which detects their face and scans their temperature from up to 3 feet away. Results are delivered in less than three seconds. The tablet's sensor and body heat algorithm ensure temperature accuracy with a tolerance of +/- 0.5 degrees Fahrenheit (+/- 0.3 degrees Celsius) and has a refresh rate of 64Hz, according to the manufacturer.

For Willapa Medical Clinic, the kiosk eliminates the need for another person to perform scans and prevents any skin contact. As a result, the health provider is able to assess the next steps for check-in. When a temperature is detected, staff will hear a chime that lets them know to move the patient into an exam room immediately. The tablet can be programmed with a special message to indicate what patients should do next, such as, "Please follow a staff member to an exam room." This helps to limit cross-infection in waiting rooms.