Backed by Active Capital, ReturnSafe’s BioSecurity Platform has been implemented by more than thirty organizations as part of their return to office protocols
ReturnSafe, a mission-driven BioSecurity company focused on workplace health safety, announced today that since the beginning of May, more than 30 organizations have adopted the ReturnSafe BioSecurity Platform to help keep their work environments safe for their communities.
“In February, I started to see the human and economic destruction unfold in Asian countries due to the Coronavirus and knew that soon, the virus would be impacting us here in the United States,” said Tarun Nimmagadda, Founder and CEO of ReturnSafe. “Based on history and the infectious diseases that have come before, I recognized that waiting for a vaccine could take a very long time and it would not be the silver bullet that everyone hoped for. I knew that the only way to slow the spread of the Coronavirus and to help businesses stay open was to offer a solution that would screen, test and trace COVID-19 in the workplace.”
The ReturnSafe BioSecurity Platform offers organizations an end to end solution that slows the spread of infectious diseases by implementing critical daily screening with a symptoms diary and recommendations governed by HR policies; testing data management for quick notification of a positive test; and Bluetooth contact-tracing via smartphone and hardware wearables at the workplace including a built-in social distancing alarm.
“We have been pleased with ReturnSafe as a solution to manage the safety of employees at corporate, regional and property locations in multiple states,” said Mark H. Dambly, President of Pennrose. “Our property management and maintenance teams are essential employees and have been reporting to work throughout the shutdowns, and with the pandemic, we needed to find a scalable solution that would allow us to screen our 400+ person workforce. The ReturnSafe BioSecurity Platform enables us to conduct daily screening and contact tracing, which helps our Human Resources team manage risks associated with keeping our employees safe at work.”
ReturnSafe supports businesses in various industries including health and senior care organizations, educational institutions, event venues, non-profits, hospitality, manufacturing, law, real estate, financial services and more, throughout the United States including Hawaii, and Canada and the United Kingdom.
Founded by Tarun Nimmagadda, Jikku Venkat (Chief Technology and Head of Product), Dr. Reef Gillum (Chief Medical Officer) and Jason Story (Vice President of Business Development and Sales), ReturnSafe draws from the deep experience of the founders in public health policy, healthcare IT systems, consumer technology and enterprise software development.
“The majority of businesses, from schools and non-profit organizations to nursing homes and event venues, are rapidly searching for ways to get back to work safely,” said Pat Matthews, Founder and CEO of Active Capital. “We believe ReturnSafe is uniquely positioned to holistically address this challenge. Their founding team has the experience and mission-driven focus to truly make a difference and we are thrilled to support their journey.”
At ReturnSafe, we work with organizations across Business, Education, Manufacturing, Sports & Entertainment, Hospitality and beyond. This month, we collected a few stories to share how our customers are using ReturnSafe’s BioSecurity platform to return to work.
Video: How this School Returned to Campus
Hear from Strake Jesuit College Preparatory on why they chose our solution to keep students, faculty and staff safe while returning to campus. Watch our video
Case Study: Automating Daily Health Checks in Nursing Homes
Nursing homes were the hardest hit during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. Find out why Redstone Presbyterian SeniorCare chose ReturnSafe to protect their community. Download the case study
Webinar Replay: Why You Need a Campus-Wide BioSecurity Plan
Hear from Stephen Alderman, Vice President & General Counsel for South Texas College of Law Houston on how his team is using our BioSecurity platform to keep their doors open. Watch the webinar replay
Are you looking for screening and contact tracing tools for your organization? Book a demo with someone on our team to try our tools! Learn how it works.
These businesses have published their extensive coronavirus health & safety protocols
With the world reopening and some semblance of ‘normalcy’ starting to return, companies of all shapes and sizes are beginning to come up with what their ‘return to work’ plan will be. These plans need to be instituted to not only ensure that their facilities, factories and store fronts meet new local, regional and national health and safety standards, but they also need to calm fears amongst their workforce, customer base, vendors and visitors in order to get things up and running again. We rounded up three leaders in the fields of: automotive, hospitality and food processing who have published detailed plans for their new health and safety protocols in the coronavirus world.
The Automotive Coronavirus Return to Work Playbook
Tesla released something called their “Return to Work Playbook” where they outline everything from facilities improvements, employee training, screening, social distancing, and new overall processes for daily life at their California plants. The playbook begins by outlining a set of “readiness checks” for all facilities, including: verifying all indoor and outdoor areas that people may come into contact with have been cleaned and sanitized, checking that air filters are in proper working order, assuring that social distancing is made possible by reduced occupancy across tight areas and enclosed spaces, and generally guaranteeing that all onsite precautions have been made. Next, the playbook goes on to detail about how the workforce will be trained on the new processes in place to best maintain a healthy and safe work environment, including another readiness checklist. Finally, the document moves onto how the team will control access to the campus in order to ensure the maintenance of all other protocols, including: temperature screening, employee self-checks, and a list of processes to go through if someone does test positive for COVID-19.
How Hotels Will Return to Welcoming Guests
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts recently announced a partnership with Johns Hopkins Medicine International called, Lead With Care. This partnership will provide the guidelines for their reopening across the international brand. Johns Hopkins experts will be validating new Four Seasons health and safety protocols and will provide ongoing guidance as they are implemented. “Along with already-commonplace measures such as more sanitizers, masks and heightened cleaning and hygiene, our collaboration with Johns Hopkins equips our property teams with access to leading international experts and real-time COVID-19 information, enhancing our tools and training to deliver an experience grounded in safety and trust,” says Christian Clerc, President, Global Operations, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. The program has two phases: “Review & Validation” and “Ongoing Guidance.” First, they are completing a thorough review of all existing practices at each property and will implement new practices as necessary. Some of these new practices include: installing a “Hygiene Officer” at each hotel, increasing the frequency with which areas are disinfected, and equipping each guest room with a “Lead With Care Kit”, which offers face masks, hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes. Moreover, according to their initial press release regarding the program, “the ongoing collaboration with Johns Hopkins Medicine International team [will include] direct access to curated critical updates, relevant COVID-19 research outcomes, and expert advice to ensure real-time adjustments to operating procedures.”
Essential Businesses Remain Proactive While Returning to Work
Many of the Cargill facilities were deemed essential due to being food processing and industrial platns so their employees and partners haven’t missed a beat since the beginning of the pandemic. And now as we all move into this new phase of the crisis, they have also been working on a set of standards that will be in place going forward to best protect their workforce, customers and partners from airborne diseases. According to a recent statement on the safety of their North American meat processing facilities, “In partnership with the World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control, OSHA and other national and local health officials, we are proactively putting into place the latest available safety protocols appropriate for the contexts in which we operate.” Some of the new measures they are taking include: implementing a screening survey for anyone entering a plant, temperature screening each day, limiting all unnecessary visitors, increasing the already high level of daily sanitation, installing protective barriers on the production floor and providing appropriate PPE for employees. Beyond the in-plant process updates, they have also put together a set of community-focused guidelines, such as: providing buses that are retrofitted with protective barriers between seats to alleviate the need for carpooling in a safe, sanitary way and a long term focus on building awareness of social distancing best practices inside and outside of work for everyone in their ecosystem.
Is your business currently working on a ‘return to work’ plan or are you looking for a contact tracing app? If so, we can help you automate the implementation process and advise on how to create a best in class holistic solution so you can hit the ground running in a safe and secure way going forward. We deliver automation, accountability and compliance for businesses reopening after the coronavirus shutdowns. Book a demo with us to find out how we do that! Learn how it works.
We are excited to announce our first virtual event! On September 23rd, we will be hosting a free webinar to discuss how South Texas College of Law Houston implemented ReturnSafe to keep their school open and safe. Register below!
UPCOMING: Case Study Webinar
Join us on September 23rd to learn how South Texas College of Law Houston is utilizing ReturnSafe to provide daily health screening and digital contact tracing to ensure student, faculty, and staff safety amidst COVID-19. Register here
3 Return to Work Plans From Industry Leaders
Businesses are implementing new health and safety measures to address the pandemic. These organizations crafted reopening plans specific to the needs of their industry. Read more
How Will You Meet The CDC Guidelines For Returning To Work?
How is your solution meeting the CDC’s key reopening criteria? Our solution can help you check their boxes! Read more
Why Your Business Needs a Contact Tracing Application
What steps is your organization taking to prevent an outbreak? Let us help you create a plan to stop COVID-19 transmission in its tracks. Read more
Are you looking for screening and contact tracing tools for your organization? Book a demo with someone on our team to try our tools! Learn how it works.
Schools were in some ways fortunate that the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States fairly close to the end of the school year giving them the summer to figure out how to bring students back in the Fall. Faced with many different requirements from their cities, counties, states and from the federal government, educators and administrators recognized the complexity of the situation they were in. And now with the school year imminent, it is clear that technology and automated processes are needed to alleviate some of the strain the necessary symptom screening and contact tracing would put on school staff. Strake Jesuit College Preparatory, in Houston, TX chose ReturnSafe to assist in their mission of making it safer and easier for their students, faculty and staff to return to school this semester.
We recently spoke with John Fahy, Assistant Principal for Student Affairs at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory on why his team chose ReturnSafe as their technology partner to automate their return to school process and to make their campus safe for in-person learning once again.
The Need for a Digital Solution for Managing the COVID-19 Threat
Strake Jesuit College Preparatory recently re-opened for the Fall semester, remotely. However, everyone is eager to get back to campus as soon as they can. “We know that our on-campus experience is what makes us such an attractive choice for our students and families, which is what created this urgency around finding a technological solution for the current situation. Our community wants to get back on campus,” said Fahy. “We want to reopen carefully, with the most innovative tools available to us.”
Why Schools Need Contact Tracing
Typically, Strake Jesuit has over 1,300 students and about 200 faculty and staff on campus. An academic community is a complex beast to deal with during a pandemic, as what is an isolated community while on campus, represents a large cross section of people once they leave. Strake’s student community interacts with siblings who attend other schools, parents who are essential workers, family members of staff who are essential workers, and so on, so tracking the movements of this community throughout the school day was going to be crucial to stopping an outbreak. “Without an automated solution this would be quite challenging for our staff,” said Fahy. “And of course, what’s compounding this is that the classroom experience involves spending considerable amounts of time in one place amongst other people.” Contact tracing on a campus is critical due to these two key factors.
Why Strake Jesuit Chose ReturnSafe
“We feel a personal commitment to making our school safer so that we can return to our campus and ReturnSafe is helping us open sooner and more safely for our students.”
John Fahy, Assistant Principal for Student Affairs at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory
John and his team created a COVID-19 committee, which consisted of faculty, staff and parents. Their discussions began around how to implement the many guidelines they were provided by federal, state and local officials so that they could reopen for the new school year. And when they arrived at the concept of digitally assisted contact tracing they looped in their IT team as well.
“What really caught our attention during the evaluation process was that we could implement ReturnSafe’s contact tracing solution on our school-issued iPads, which are given to all students. This is a very simple and cost-effective method for us to rollout ReturnSafe to our community, which is also multiplying our school’s ability to contact trace, making our COVID-19 response more accurate and easier to implement,” said Fahy.
Return to School Process
Strake Jesuit is hoping to return to campus in a few weeks and they know that their re-entry is going to begin with a hybrid model where a portion of students will be onsite and the remainder will be at home. However, the team has already begun symptom screening and manually contact tracing for the faculty and staff that are on campus already. But there was always a concern that they would not be able to continue this methodical approach when they needed to scale up to their full student population. But they are now confident that they will be able to maintain the same level of safety standards, even with everyone on campus, thanks to ReturnSafe. “Having ReturnSafe on our side, the scale-up process looks a lot more manageable for us and we think we will be able to open sooner and safer,” said Fahy.
Getting Started with ReturnSafe
“Our onboarding process has been so smooth with ReturnSafe. Our questions have always been answered quickly and the team has been more than happy to jump on calls with us to support us throughout the onboarding experience and now through the rollout,” said Fahy. The ReturnSafe team knows that these are challenging times for our customers, no matter the industry, but particularly so in education. It is important to us that each and every customer gets the guidance and assistance that they need.
As educators and community leaders, the team at Strake Jesuit are committed to making their school safe for their students, faculty and staff and they are all motivated by the desire to return to in-person classes and activities once again. With ReturnSafe’s daily symptom tracking and contact tracing tools we are helping them to do just that. For more information on how our solution can help your school do the same, book a demo with our team today.
The following post summarizes key findings from the article ‘Impact of delays on effectiveness of contact tracing strategies for COVID-19: a modeling study’ published by The Lancet Public Health. The piece is written by Dr. Mirjam E Kretzschmar, Dr. Ganna Rozhnova, Dr. Martin C J Bootsma, Dr. Michiel van Boven, Dr. Janneke H H M van de Wijgert, and Dr. Marc J M Bonten. Read on to explore the importance of a contact tracing solution in the effectiveness of containing the spread of COVID-19.
The article explored the impact of delays in tracing and testing to effective contact tracing. Additionally, it examined and compared the effectiveness of manual contact tracing and mobile app-based contact tracing.
You do not want a delay in COVID-19 testing
It is important to minimize the time between symptom onset and receiving a positive test result in order to prevent further infections. The article asserts that minimizing testing delay is crucial to improving contact tracing effectiveness, assuming immediate isolation following a test result. Our daily screening application will prompt employees to stay at home and see a doctor immediately after they report COVID-19 symptoms. Additionally, users can directly report positive test results within the application to notify administrators.
You do not want a delay in contact tracing
Decreasing the amount of time it takes to trace contacts is incredibly important to reducing overall COVID-19 transmission. The article found that shortening this time interval boosted the efficacy of contact tracing. In the study, they assumed the person immediately sought testing and then isolated, if positive. Our contact tracing application allows users to log who they’ve been in contact with. Additionally, through our BioSecurity Portal, administrators can see who a positive case has been in contact with, automatically via Bluetooth tracking and can then notify those who were potentially exposed.
App-Based Contact Tracing vs Manual Contact Tracing
Overall, they found mobile app-based contact tracing to be more effective than conventional contact tracing because of the application’s quick response capabilities. One interesting case they did not study in this piece was a hybrid approach with conventional and app-based contact tracing systems. ReturnSafe’s solution provides you with an app-based solution. However, through our Partnership with TaskUs, you also have access to manual tracing options. With our solution, your administrators have all the tools they need to effectively control and contain the COVID-19 outbreak and keep employees safe.
What factors may negatively impact contact tracing?
The article also identified hindrances to effective contact tracing. Amongst these were a significant number of undiagnosed or asymptomatic cases and untraceable contacts.
How can you reduce the impact of these factors?
App-based screening and contact tracing solutions can increase the number of traceable contacts and diagnosed cases. However, to do this, there must be substantial participation, application acceptance, and sustained usage. What does that mean? Your employees should feel the application is built for their safety to encourage user participation. Our solution is crafted by experts in UX design and app development to optimize the users experience. How do you know if your application is widely accepted? Through our BioSecurity Portal administrators can directly monitor screening compliance.
Our goal is to empower the employees and the organization to stay safe. So we created features that allow users and administrators to maximize the effectiveness of contact tracing. Every measure your organization takes to prevent infection will lower the overall number of cases and contain the outbreak.
So, let’s start now! Book a demo to learn more about how our solution can protect your organization to combat COVID-19.