Technology used to screen visitors and examine patients will soon be implemented at Franklin Medical Center.

FMC Board of Commissioners agreed to purchase the hardware at their regular June 25 meeting. It was their first face-to-face meeting since April due to COVID-19 social distancing guidelines. Commissioners had been meeting via phone conferences.

The 986 Temperature Screening Kiosks will be set up at FMC entrances and its rural health clinics. The kiosks implements infrared sensors and artificial intelligence face recognition technology to instantly perform temperature readings. The system is non-contact for visitors and does not require any participation from hospital employees.

After visitors stand a few feet from the screen, the kiosks will indicate either green for pass or red for fail. The kiosks are also capable of face mask recognition and employee identification.

Board of Commissioners gave the go ahead to purchase 10 kiosks at a total price of $32,000.

Additionally, Board of Commissioners agreed to purchase one Double 3 telepresence robot to assist on-call doctors in the initial after-hours examinations of patients.

Described as an “iPad on wheels,” the Double 3 enables users to remotely perform a patient’s brief history and physical.

The new technology will also protect physicians, according to Blake Kramer, FMC administrator.

“You don’t have as big a risk of your physician getting infected,” Kramer said.

Board of Commissioners agreed to purchase one Double 3 telepresence robot at $4,500.

Meanwhile, FMC’s preliminary April budget numbers showed approximately $9.91 million in total current assets and $2.7 million in

total current liabilities.

Both total surgery cases and emergency room visits were down for April. The slide in numbers were attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic.

FMC recorded just 18 surgeries in April, a drop from last year’s total of 118, according to budget numbers. Emergency room visits decreased to nearly half of last year’s 853 total to 432.

FMC’s rural clinic numbers continue to be down across the board, according to budget numbers.

Winnsboro South clinic showed the most visitors in April with 1,808 but was still down from last year’s total of 2,106. Winnsboro South clinic reported 758 patients while Crowville Health Clinic saw 228 people for April. Mental Health and clinics in Newellton and St. Joseph each showed 173 visits.

“Everything is just way below than what we projected,” said Billy Page, FMC Chief Financial Officer.

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