The CDC has stated that a good indication for some carriers of Covid (and in others it doesn’t present this way…which is a whole other issue….) is a low grade fever. A lot of businesses are now taking your temperature when you walk-in. I had a student ask me why we weren’t. We have asked our members to protect our community and take their temperatures before coming for a few reasons.
Temperatures very. A lot. If you have been outside in the sun your temperature will be different than if you were sitting in an air conditioned car. The best way to have accurate temperature data is to take it at a similar time each day. I take mine 20 minutes after I wake-up and depending on the day mine fluctuates an entire degrees Celsius (since I somehow turned my thermometer from Fahrenheit to Celsius two months ago and can’t figure out how to turn it back….) So for the most accurate data on your health, taking your temperature at a consistent time will result in the best and safest data.
If someone registered with a temperature when they are standing in our lobby, what then? Do we send the home? Do we allow them to sit in the waiting area and see if their temperature goes down in a few minutes once they are in the AC? A lots of places are doing this, which confuses the heck out of me; you don’t want someone in your building with a temperature so you are taking their temp then if they have one have them sitting in your entry to see if it get better? If that person did have covid, they are now breathing particles into your space right at the most busy place waiting to see. Not a great solution.
Then….what if their temperature doesn’t change and they do have a low grade fever? What if the person insists they are healthy and they want to come in to class regardless of what the thermometer says? How does my instructor handle that? Does she send her home or forcibly remove the student? This situation would be difficult and awkward to navigate for all involved. Better to know if you should or should not come before actually coming!
There are also potential privacy and liability issue with taking a temperature the lobby. Do we need to record the temperature so if someone presents with symptoms the following day we can prove that they were “healthy” when they were with us? That’s then a medical record which means HIPPA and all kinds of other regulations go into place. Plus, it feels intrusive. Walking in and have someone standing there as a gate keeper with a thermometer is stressful. Every time I walk in to a store with this set-up I have a surge of anxiety. I took my temperature that morning, I know I am healthy, but every time I have a momentary freak out worrying I’ll be told I have a temperature. Aerial Dance is where women come to feel safe and welcome, having their first interaction be an anxiety attack is against our mission.
My instructors are amazing pole and aerial teachers; most are not medically trained in medical procedure so there is a big possibility for human error. Plus calibration of the thermometer is another issue. How often does it need to be calibrated? How do we calibrate? How are we sure that the thermometer we are using is accurate? I honestly have no clue about this and would hate to tell a student they were ill when it was a human or calibration issue.
For all of these reasons we have instead asked our women to take their temperatures before coming. They know their thermometer and (hopefully) how to use it. They can take their temperature at a consistent time each day to have an accurate understanding of if they have a fever. Our students are responsible adults who care about our sisterhood. Keeping their health in their hands is the logical approach and allows us to concentrate on the saftey of our facilities.