When Carthage College students begin returning to campus in Kenosha, Wisconsin, next week, two very non-traditional welcome back gifts will await them: a thermometer, and a scratch-and-sniff smell test card.
Temperature checks as a way to quickly provide a gauge for a common symptom of the novel coronavirus aren’t exactly uncommon in the United States. But smell tests are relative newcomers to the screening scene. Both will be part of daily self-monitoring at the liberal arts college.
“Losing your sense of smell is an early symptom—sometimes the only symptom—of COVID,” Leslie Cameron, a psychology professor and expert on sensory perception at Carthage, told The Daily Beast. “We should be testing for it.”
Carthage is among a growing number of schools, businesses, and other institutions looking to leverage growing knowledge of how COVID-19 can wreak havoc on the olfactory system to make something resembling safe reopening