CLEVELAND — University Hospitals is adding another level of protection for its healthcare workers with a wireless, adhesive patches that monitor temperature.
TempTraq from Blue Spark Technologies is a patch that a caregiver can wear. It monitors, records and transmits real-time data to, not only, the caregiver wearing it, but also University Hospitals.
The technology was first introduced at Seidman Cancer Center in 2016.
“By monitoring patients temperatures continuously, we're able to see temperature rises as soon as they happen in real time,” said Dr. Ted Teknos the president and scientific director of UH’s Seidman Cancer Center.
Dr. Teknos said recently the hospital system realized the patches could be effective in fighting COVID-19.
“As many as 20 to 30% of healthcare workers in hotspot areas are becoming infected with this virus, so they really are putting themselves in harm's way in a meaningful way,” said Dr. Teknos.
Often times, the virus can be asymptomatic and a fever can be one of the first indications of COVID-19.
“As soon as we start to see an elevation in temperature, there's an alarm that goes off, either for the healthcare worker themselves or centrally where it's monitored, and we can pull that front line health care worker off,” he said.
He said it’s a way to protect that worker, the staff at University Hospitals, and, of course, the patients too.
“Certainly we protect our healthcare workers with the appropriate masking and gowns and face shields, and that's a great physical barrier, but what this is, is almost like a biochemical protection,” he said.
The program is optional for any University Hospital workers.