Just a few miles from Disney World near Orlando, Fla., Harris Rosen’s hotel empire is mostly closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. One crucial condition for reopening, Rosen says, will be testing any of his company’s 4,000 employees who show potential signs of having the disease.
Since March, Rosen Hotels & Resorts, which comprises eight hotels with nearly 7,000 rooms, has tested more than 500 such workers at its employee health clinic and its impromptu drive-thru testing site near Orlando. Sixteen were confirmed cases of COVID-19. When the hotel chain reopens later this spring or summer, it plans to have employees regularly fill out a questionnaire about their health and travel history. All employees will get their temperature taken when they arrive and those with fevers above 100.4°F will not be allowed on the worksite. Rosen is still working out details of its strategy, but it also plans to give workers with a fever and other COVID-19 symptoms a diagnostic test for the virus.
Across the U.S., and across industries, companies have closed their worksites for the past month or so, or operated at significantly reduced capacity. Meat-processing plants in the Midwest have been closed because tight workspaces helped spur outbreaks, nursing homes across the country have seen deaths among staff members needed to care for ailing residents, and flight attendants report increasing cases of the disease.