By Paresh Dave
OAKLAND, Calif. (Reuters) – When a senior living facility in Amarillo, Texas suspected a nurse may have caught the novel coronavirus this month, it had a list within five minutes of staff and residents the nurse could have infected.
High-tech wristbands worn by The Legacy at Town Square’s 35 workers and 49 residents expedited contact tracing, the otherwise pain-staking process of interviewing patients to determine who crossed paths with them.
The nurse tested negative an hour later and Legacy did not have to isolate or test others. But its experience shows how wristbands and other wearables have emerged as tools to automatically record encounters between people at places that can mandate their use.
Facilities with quick contact tracing following infections in the coming months will be better positioned to ward off outbreaks and stay open, according to epidemiologists.
“It makes you ready to make the best operational