Since May 1, all Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM) facilities worldwide —including the NAS Patuxent River NEX — have begun health screening all civilian and military associates and affiliated vendors prior to working in the store.
“When an associate or vendor enters a facility they are met by a member of that NEX,” said Kathyln Daughrity, general manager of the Pax River NEX. “There is a screening questionnaire along with a temperature check performed for everyone.”
The questionnaire asks the person’s travel history and any potential contact with anyone affected with COVID-19, and also includes questions pertaining to any current symptoms the person may be experiencing.
“If an individual has a temperature of 100 or higher and/or they have other symptoms, they will be asked to go home until there are no more symptoms,” Daughrity explained. “Associates will be in contact with their supervisors during this time.”
In addition to the health screenings, sneeze shields were installed at all cash registers in April, floor markings are visible at the checkout indicating the suggested 6-feet physical distancing guideline, and anyone entering the NEX — associates, vendors and patrons — is required to wear a face covering.
“The health and safety of our associates and patrons remain imperative as we continue to navigate the impacts of COVID-19,” said Rear Adm. Robert Bianchi, NEXCOM’s chief executive officer, in a released statement. “Our NEX teams will continue to provide additional protections like sneeze shields, cleaning methods, temperature checks and mandatory cloth face coverings. I ask that our patrons continue to maintain social distancing and wear face coverings as well whenever they are in any of our facilities.”
Seniors, at-risk patrons and service members can also take advantage of special shopping hours.
“The main store is operating an hour earlier Monday to Thursday for patrons 60 years and above [or at-risk], and from Friday to Sunday for active-duty members and dependents,” Daughrity added. “Shoppers can shop from 8-9 a.m. Monday through Saturday and from 9-10 a.m. Sunday prior to the regular store opening. “
Health and safety are top priorities for the NEX and the facility will continue working to ensure safety measures are in place, Daughrity noted.