Tyson Foods is piloting a new Matrix Medical Network (Matrix) program that assesses, addresses, verifies and monitors the effectiveness of the company’s efforts to protect workers from COVID-19.
More than a dozen Tyson Foods plant locations, including some of the company’s largest facilities, are participating. Six have already received safety verification and seven more are in the process of being assessed.
The Matrix Certification Program was developed in collaboration with Cleveland Clinic, one of the nation’s largest health systems, and is designed to help verify and monitor that businesses are taking appropriate measures to minimize the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
The program takes a multi-disciplinary approach to workplace safety verification that includes:
- On-site assessments based on the latest guidelines from the CDC, OSHA and state regulations
- Best-in-class protocols based on the well-established clinical and industry expertise of Cleveland Clinic and Matrix
- Actionable recommendations to address identified health and safety gaps
- Ongoing updates on evolving COVID-19 guidance and regulations
Certification assesses people, processes and structure. It also involves analysis of workplace policies and procedures, as well as areas where people gather, including density, traffic flow, ventilation and physical proximity. A safety verification seal indicating alignment to certification standards, once granted, is issued for a year and includes another on-site assessment after six months to ensure continued compliance with current guidelines.
“Our company has made tremendous progress in our efforts to protect our team members by transforming our facilities and implementing an always-on testing strategy,” said Tom Brower, senior vice president of Health & Safety for Tyson Foods. “We believe this certification by outside health experts confirms we’re using best-in-class measures to combat the virus. And, what we learn from the plants where we’re piloting this program can also be applied at other company locations across the country.”
Matrix Chief Medical Officer Daniel Castillo, M.D., commented, "Matrix has been working closely with Tyson since the beginning of the pandemic setting up mobile health clinics, conducting risk assessments, and collaborating with the company on testing strategies. The new certification program brings together the Matrix risk assessment and Covid-19 experience and the deep clinical expertise of Cleveland Clinic to establish and sustain healthy, safe, and productive workplaces for Tyson employees.”
The certification program is the latest in a series of continuous improvement measures Tyson Foods has taken to fight new waves of COVID-19. During fiscal 2020, the company invested $540 million to transform its U.S. facilities with protective measures, from walk-through temperature scanners and workstation dividers to social distance monitors and always-on testing, as well as provide additional team member pay and benefits. Tyson foods has also expanded its health services staff, added a chief medical officer and plans to pilot health clinics for team members and their families early this year.
Earlier this month, Tyson announced that it is also partnering with Matrix to ensure the company’s U.S. team members are educated about and have access to COVID-19 vaccines.