Three buses outfitted with TempWall by Trusscore modular walls have taken to the streets of Waterloo Region to provide rapid screening at workplaces for COVID-19. The initiative is a public-private collaboration called the StaySafe Rapid Antigen Screening Program.
- Trusscore products are playing a role in a new COVID-19 screening program in Waterloo Region
- Three specially equipped buses are rolling through the region, providing free rapid antigen screening for COVID-19 at small to medium businesses
- TempWall by Trusscore panels have been installed in the three buses, creating temporary interior walls designed to keep people safe as they complete their screening
- The initiative is called the StaySafe Rapid Antigen Screening Program
Rapid screening for COVID-19 is a key weapon in the arsenal to control the virus and keep people healthy and workplaces safe. The problem is that existing molecular nasal swab tests sometimes take days to process. For businesses, getting workers to take the initiative and go to a testing site – a process that can take hours – can be fraught.
But what if a more rapid screening method were available? What if tests could be brought directly to the workplace?
Enter the StaySafe Rapid Antigen Screening Program.
StaySafe is a pilot program now underway in Canada’s Waterloo Region. The program, less than a week old, involves three specially outfitted buses, each capable of bringing rapid antigen screening directly to the doorstep of a workplace. People step into the bus and then self-administer a free test for COVID-19 that takes all of 15 minutes to complete.
The program is the end product of contributions from a broad coalition of public and private partners – including Trusscore; each of the three buses being used in the pilot have been outfitted with a Trusscore product called TempWall.
TempWall by Trusscore is a modular wall system – a PVC-based, free-standing, temporary partition wall designed to create a physical barrier between people. The TempWall product was created at the outset of the pandemic, precisely with COVID-19 in mind. The durability, hygienic properties, and cleanability of TempWall helped it become a go-to solution for hospitals across North America as they retooled existing spaces to cope with the pandemic. It has additionally been adopted by communities for use in vaccination centers and testing sites.
The StaySafe coalition acquired 44 TempWall panels, custom fitting them for use on the buses being used in the pilot. The panels are configured to form cubicles inside each bus, keeping people physically distanced as they complete their rapid antigen screening.
“We’re delighted, of course, that our TempWall by Trusscore product is playing a role in such an important endeavor,” said Trusscore CEO Dave Caputo. The quick rollout of TempWall for hospitals in March 2020, caught the eye of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who gave a mention of it and Trusscore in one of his early COVID-19 press briefings.
That mention by the prime minister stuck in the mind of Sarah Mostowich, the program lead and Innovation Consultant at Communitech, a public-private partnership based in Waterloo Region that helps technology companies start and grow. Communitech is one of the partners in the StaySafe program.
“I remembered hearing that Trusscore had an antimicrobial temporary wall divider,” said Mostowich. “I thought it would be a good fit for our project.”
In fact, after investigating further, it was clear the product ticked a lot of boxes that made it ideal for the intended use case:
- TempWall comes in multiple panel sizes and can be configured in many different layouts, a feature that made it a candidate for fast installation even in the confined geography of a bus.
- TempWall is easy to clean, reducing the workload for the bus staff, and simplifying infection control.
- The surface of each TempWall panel is treated with an antimicrobial coating, delivering additional infection and bacteria control. Bacteria are attracted to the coating’s positive charge; after making contact with it, they quickly die. Moreover, the coating never requires reapplication and maintains long-lasting antimicrobial efficacy.
To date, more than 600 people have been screened for COVID-19 aboard the mobile pop-up locations and the program is expected to quickly scale to handle up to 3,000 people per week.
“Mobile rapid antigen screening is an innovative and creative project,” said Caputo. "Our product is part of a partnership that will help in the quest to wrestle the virus to the ground.”
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