East Bay daycare goes high-tech to stop spread of illness

At Lil Buds Day Care, each little bud starts the day at a high-tech device that takes their temperature. The device is called the Wello Station, made by Dallas, Texas based Wello Inc.

It is used in medical clinics, hospitals and jails. But this is the first time it is being tested in a day care facility.

"This device is really helping us control the spread of contagious infections," said Akriti Srivastava, the daycare operator

If a temperature reaches 99.5 degrees, the day care takes notice. At 100.1 the child is not allowed to stay and possibly infect the other kids or staff.

Bay Area emergency room Dr. Larry Burchett  said it could possibly catch a child infected with measles days before the rash appears.

"One way to potentailly prevent a measles outbreak would be to have people detected early. A fever happens earlier in the case of measles. That would be one way to screen them out of a day care or school," he said.

The Wello Station had been approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration. 

It uses infrared technology with multiple sensors inside, trained on the area between a child's forehead and the bridge of their nose. The company says it is accurate within point-two degrees. The results are subject to HIPPA privacy laws.

The day care so far hasn't seen a temperature high enough to send a child home. But the operators have noticed a change in parents. They seem to realize if their child is sick, the device will pick up on it. So they keep their children home.

“What's been great is parents have been calling in ahead of time and messaging us before coming in saying their child isn't feeling well and won't be coming in,” said Srivastava.

Under law, day cares can not take a child's temperature orally or rectally..

“We did health checks prior to this by touching the forehead,” said Srivastava

The manufacturer is hoping to enter the day care market soon.

“If this day care center can demonstrate some success in preventing other kids from getting sick, you will see these scanners spreading. No pun intended,” said Dr. Burchett.