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It's gettin' hot in here: OSU sets up temperature check stations across campus

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A temperature check station in the Noble Research Center on September 22, 2020 in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

To better screen for COVID-19, Oklahoma State University announced voluntary temperature check stations on campus in a press release last week.

Students and staff walking around campus will find orange kiosks, similar to hand sanitizer stations, with thermal scanners. The scanners are able to read a temperature quickly from three feet away. 

The temperature check stations can be found in 10 locations around campus including; the north and south entrances of Edmond Low, the east entrance of the Classroom building, the east entrance of the Colvin Center, and more. 

In OSU’s Cowboys Coming Back plan, students, faculty, and staff are asked to take their temperature daily before going to campus. If a temperature is above 100.4 degrees, students, faculty and staff are asked to stay home. 

Senior director of University Health, Counseling and Accessibility Services, Chris Barlow said the scanners signify the university’s dedication to individual and public health, in an OSU press release on Sept. 15. 

“These voluntary kiosks go along with the central message we’ve had from the start of the pandemic that if you have any of the symptoms of COVID-19, you should be at home taking care of yourself rather than out and about on campus,” Barlow said in the press release. “This is just one tool within our overall strategy in raising public health awareness and trying to limit the spread of COVID-19.”

The scanners can detect a temperature while the individual is wearing a mask and do not store images.

Some universities have adopted similar technology, but the University of Oklahoma discourages temperature checks according to their website. 

“Departments are discouraged from conducting temperature checks,” said OU’s Norman Campus Phase 3 Return plan. “If a department will require temperature checks, the manager must obtain prior approval from the Office of Human Resources.” 

news.ed@ocolly.com