To all our clients, business partners and friends.
In our company Alveni México and its affiliate Alveni LLC in USA, we are working hard both internally and with the Kiosk Manufacturer Association to which we belong, so we can offer the most adequate information regarding the correct usage and cleaning practices for interactive kiosks in order to prevent virus transmittal during this worldwide sanitary alert period that has been caused by the coronavirus or COVID-19.
A “Prevention of COVID-19 through use of kiosks” infographic and a "How to properly clean the kiosks" video are also available.
Minimizing human contact.
One of the most important recommendations during this period in which the coronavirus has spread exponentially is to perform "social distancing", that is, "avoid as much as possible the contact between people in general" which includes avoiding places that gather large groups of people. This makes a lot of sense since a single infected person can be in contact with dozens of people and without knowing it, can transmit the virus to them, which in turn, each of those people can infect dozens of others and so on.
Therefore, in different countries massive events have been banned or canceled, as well as establishments such as restaurants, bars, hotels, cinemas, museums, etc., have closed to the public. The rule today is to stay home, and if you need to go out, avoid visiting places with a high concentration of people. How then can interactive kiosks help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in this scenario?
Kiosks can minimize the risk of virus transmission.
Interactive kiosks therefore represent an important point of contact between the company and its diverse audiences for different purposes such as: human resources information, services payments, document printing, self checkout; for example, to self-check-in at a hotel, buy a movie ticket, or self-checkout at a store. Every person's interaction with a kiosk means less interaction between people, which is perfectly aligned with the recommendation of " less human contact. "
On a positive note, interactive kiosks can be cleaned up after each interaction and therefore, the possible sources of virus contagion or transmission are minimized by substituting the "person to person" interaction to a "person to machine" one. Where there is a person to person interaction, in most cases there is a physical proximity between them that involves both physical contact and/or conversation. Additionally, credit cards, coins, keyboards, screens and other devices could be touched and/or used by both persons. An employee who has the virus but hasn't been diagnosed, could represent a risk for all the people who interact with him.
In contrast, when a person to maching interaction is made, the device is only used by one person at a time and physical contact with another person is avoided. Due to this, many companies worldwide are prioritizing, when possible, the use of kiosks and self-service systems instead of customer service by their employees, minimizing the risk of contagion and protecting the well being and health of both their employees and their customers in general.
The key: proper cleaning.
The cleaning of kiosks in general, including all interaction devices such as readers, monitors and keyboards which a person may have contact with, must be cleaned properly and after any contact. No specialized cleaners are necessary. The recommendation is to clean them with "soapy water", that is, water with sopa, since it has been proven to be the most effective method against coronavirus. If soap and water are not available, then you can use cleaning towels that are at least 60% alcohol; it could be the medical or industrial grade disposable towels (do not use baby wipes).
Recommendations for companies who use self-service kiosks.
Keep a spray with a soap solution or cleaning wipes that contain at least 60% of alcohol, as well as paper towels, next to the kiosk, so the user can clean the kiosk before and/or after its usage. This can also help so the user can clean his hands before/after using the kiosk.
Train your company's cleaning staff to constantly clean kiosks properly.
Train and sensitize employees about the importance of proper, regular and constant hand washing for at least 20 seconds.
Inform kiosk users of the location of restrooms so that they can wash their hands after using a kiosk (in case they cannot do it next to the kiosk).
Promote the use of personal styluses (instead of using a finger) when interacting with PCAP touchscreens.
Turn off the kiosks at the end of each day or workday and carry out a complete cleaning by a trained personnel.
Maintain a high level of hygiene in the company and invite employees with symptoms of COVID-19 not to go to work but to seek medical attention.
What not to do.
Do not use direct spray, neither soak keyboards, screens and other devices with excess liquid. Spray the soapy solution on the cloth or towel disposable paper, clean the surface and then remove excess solution with another towel disposable paper.
Do not use abrasive cleaners, cleaning powders or abrasive materials such as brushes with hard bristles that can damage electronic components.
When cleaning a touch screen, the cursor can move or select an option that is not desired, this is normal. Perform the cleaning of the kiosk before starting a session or at the end of the transaction.
When cleaning a kiosk keyboard, you could press keys and select an option you don't want, this is normal.Perform the cleaning of the kiosk before starting a session or at the end of the transaction.
Hand sanitizers can be used to clean hands, however their effectiveness is not the most adequate to kill COVID-19, so it is recommended that these gels have at least 60% of alcohol in case you don't have soap and water.
Alveni has additional options to increase general hygiene in kiosks such as industrial-grade wipes and touch-sensitive screen coatings that help prevent the growth of bacteria on the screen surface.
Alveni will continue to provide relevant information to COVID-19 and, in general, to issues of hygiene in devices and self-service kiosks. If your company or institution requires additional support, contact us for support.
Jorge Eurán Graham
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