What is social distancing?
Social distancing is a public health practice that aims to prevent sick people from coming in close contact with healthy people in order to reduce opportunities for disease transmission. It can include large-scale measures like cancelling group events or closing public spaces, as well as individual decisions such as avoiding crowds. Social distancing is a non-pharmaceutical infection prevention and control intervention implemented to avoid/decrease contact between those who are infected with a disease causing pathogen and those who are not, so as to stop or slow down the rate and extent of disease transmission in a community. This eventually leads to decrease in spread, morbidity and mortality due to the disease
With COVID-19, the goal of social distancing right now is to slow down the outbreak in order to reduce the chance of infection among high-risk populations and to reduce the burden on health care systems and workers. Experts describe this as “flattening the curve,” which generally refers to the potential success of social distancing measures to prevent surges in illness that could overwhelm health care systems.
“The goal of social distancing should be to lower the pace and extent of spread of COVID-19 in any given city or community,” Inglesby wrote recently on Twitter. “If that can happen, then there will be less people with disease, and less people needing hospitalization and ventilators at any one time.”
What are other ways to limit the spread of disease?
Other public health measures could include isolation and quarantine. According to the CDC’s latest guidance:
Isolation refers to the separation of a person or people known or reasonably believed to be infected or contagious from those who are not infected in order to prevent spread of the disease. Isolation may be voluntary, or compelled by governmental or public health authorities.
Quarantine in general means the separation of a person or people reasonably believed to have been exposed to a communicable disease but not yet symptomatic from others who have not been so exposed in order to prevent the possible spread of the disease. With COVID-19, the CDC has recommended a 14-day period to monitor for symptoms.
The ‘Safe distance’ solution enables employers to manage the social distancing of their workforce within construction, rail, manufacturing and other workplaces.
Safe distance features include:
- Alerts workers if they have strayed to within two metres of a colleague
- Informs employers of the frequency and severity of breaches of social distancing protocols
- Can assist with contact tracing of those who have been close to employees subsequently displaying Covid-19 symptoms
- Can facilitate contact tracing across employers on busy infrastructure projects
- Ring fences work teams who need to work more closely together in controlled cohorts
- Can be expanded to enable real time intervention by a supervisor in the event of social distancing breaches.
Companies working on social distancing technologies
Jacqui McLaughlin, CEO of Reactec, said: “Social distancing will clearly be with us for some time and it’s vital that when people get back to work they can do so safely.
“Our team has moved quickly to repurpose our technology to help businesses to ensure that their teams are working safely.
“Reactec, is already dedicated to helping reduce the damage to workers’ health from exposure to vibration, so developing our technology to include social distancing was a logical next step in response to Covid-19.
“We want to play our part in getting everyone back to work safely and with confidence.”
Protect workers from potential exposure
- Reactec has discussed the capabilities of Safe distance at Ministerial level with the Scottish Government.
- “Technology is going to play a crucial role in helping us overcome the long-term challenges presented by Covid-19 so it is great to see innovative, dynamic companies repurposing existing technology to help us protect workers from potential exposure in the future.”
- More than 45,000 of Reactec’s Hand Arm Vibration (HAV) monitor, HAV wear, on which Safe distance is based, are already in circulation in the UK.
Managing social distancing
- One of the company’s trialling Safe distance is Keltbray.
- Paul Deacy, managing director demolitions and civils, said: “Keltbray already uses HAVwear as it’s a robust product and the analytics reporting with its automation and GDPR compliance are critical factors to Keltbray providing actionable intelligence.
- “So when Reactec approached us to trial the new social distance functionality we already had confidence in the product. Keltbray is encouraged by this new offering. This could truly assist us in managing social distancing across our projects.”
- The Safe distance technology works by using Bluetooth enabled Reactec devices to detect other Reactec devices within a two-metre range. Should users become closer than two metres apart, both device users are warned with both vibration and audio alerts.
- McLaughlin added: “Safe distance is based on a robust, tried and tested personal monitoring technology specifically designed for harsh environments and the strongest requirements of corporate ownership of GDPR compliant data.
- “While the repurposing of the technology to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 is innovative, it is a software amendment to a well-used system. Like everyone else, we long to see the country get back to work and for the economy to be kick-started once more.
- “I’m confident that Safe distance can play an important part in helping to make this happen.”
This article was brought to you by Safe Space. Safespace is itself a provider a safety technologies and provides related services as required by its customers.
SafeSpace: A Safety System that Qualifies, Secures and Monitors travellers for Zero Contagion during Travel and beyond. It believes that there are 4 key was in which social distancing can be made a success or followed. They are as follows:
- Design the space for movement
- Control the speed of flow
- Qualify what is flowing in
- Finally Distance everything in closed space tightly
SafeSpace also believes that there are few solutions from which we can manage people’s movement in public place such as:
- Sanitization Management
- Queuing and Flow Management
- Limiting Counter
- Access and Entry Management
And for this purpose i.e. social distancing SafeSplace is also providing few products which would help people for the same.
- Counter System
- Cono Wearable System
- Smart Mirror Services
- ML Omnicloud
- Corerock admin platform
- Cono User App