Suffolk cinema temperature screens customers amid coronavirus fears
PUBLISHED: 19:02 02 March 2020
A Felixstowe cinema is taking the temperature of all its customers in a bid to beat coronavirus.
The Felixstowe Palace in Crescent Road introduced the policy last Friday for all visitors and contractors entering the venue to undergo non-invasive temperature screening.
Anyone recording a temperature of more than 37.4C will be turned away.
Patrick Duffy, managing director of the Palace Bingo Clubs, Cinemas and Bowling said: "I feel we have a duty of care to our customers and to make sure all steps are taken to protect and keep them safe, along with staff and management."
The policy was introduced on February 28 for all customers, visitors, contractors and staff for raised temperatures and Mr Duffy said it would be in place until further notice.
He added that anyone who refuses to have their temperature taken would be turned away: "I am not prepared to take the risk as it only takes one person to contaminate many.
"We are talking real risk to anyone, especially those with existing medical conditions.
"I also believe we have a personal responsibility as citizens to do all we can to prevent the spread of this virus, especially locally, and care for one another so anyone who would not be tested is not public spirited."
Read more: Hand sanitiser sells out in Suffolk shops amid fears over coronavirus
Mr Duffy said similar measures were being taken at Palace venues in Great Yarmouth and London, with daily deep cleans taking place.
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Customers visiting the Felixstowe Palace are being encouraged to wash their hands on arrival, particularly if they have travelled to the venue using public transport. Free alcohol gels and tissues will also be available on counters around the cinema and bingo hall.
Mr Duffy was in Hong Kong in 2003 during the SARS outbreak and was in Singapore a month ago. He said: "It was big news there. The best hotels were doing temperature checks.
"It is my aim to make sure that no matter what the future holds that our premises will have taken all possible steps to make sure they are virus free."
Latest NHS regarding coronavirus says people can continue to go to public places and only need to self-isolate if advised to by 111 or a medical professional.
The number of people in the UK infected with the virus now stands at 40 after four new cases were announced today (Monday March 2).
All had travelled recently to Italy, which is experiencing the biggest outbreak in Europe.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned that more cases in the UK are likely as he urged people to wash their hands to the tune of Happy Birthday.
Speaking after an emergency Cobra meeting where ministers discussed a 'battle plan' to be published on Tuesday, Mr Johnson said the spread of Covid-19 was likely to become "more significant" for the UK in coming days.
He said: "We have also agreed a plan so that if and when it starts to spread, as I'm afraid it looks likely it will, we are in a position to take the steps necessary to contain the spread of the disease as far as we can, and to protect the most vulnerable."
The PM said decisions to close schools and ban mass gatherings would only be taken on scientific advice.