Can thermal temperature detection help control COVID-19 infections?
The COVID-19 pandemic has spurred a wave of interest in thermal imaging cameras, especially those sensitive enough to detect small changes in body temperature, as they could be used to detect fever in sick people.
As sales of these systems skyrocket, you may be wondering if they’re a good investment for your business. Here’s what you need to know.
What is thermal fever detection?
Thermal imaging cameras can track the infrared energy emitted by humans and use the information to determine whether or not body temperature is elevated. The idea is simply that if someone’s body temperature is beyond a certain threshold, they’re likely to have a fever. Handheld infrared devices have been used since the 2000’s, and they’re becoming increasingly compact and effective.
How these systems detect fever
Some systems are reportedly capable of identifying high body temperature within a crowd, while others require people to stand still in front of a camera. Understandably, companies are trying to make their systems as efficient and fast as possible, especially because they could function as automatic fever detectors. This would allow authorities and businesses to monitor the presence of possibly infected people without putting workers in harm’s way.
A useful tool
The main advantage of thermal fever detection is that it can be done automatically and provide a fast way to limit the movements of potentially infected people. It also reduces the risk of security and safety personnel becoming infected during screening, as no physical contact is required. More importantly, it can help limit the presence of sick people in stores and workplaces that can’t implement social distancing measures.
While thermal fever detection is a crucial tool for controlling the spread of diseases such as COVID-19, it’s important to keep in mind that they aren’t, by themselves, enough. This is because asymptomatic carriers, who are known to be contagious, do not present with a fever. There have also been confirmed cases in which COVID-19 patients experienced little or no elevation in body temperature.
It’s also crucial to remember that not all temperature sensors are created equal. Some unscrupulous companies have marketed systems that have a margin of error of plus or minus 2 degrees centigrade, which is significant when it comes to detecting fever.
Finally, these system do not detect COVID-19 itself. Rather, they indicate the possible presence of a common symptom of COVID-19.
Highly sensitive thermal fever detection solutions
Despite their limitations, fever detection systems are crucial to a complete protection plan, which should include frequent handwashing and social distancing measures. Guardian Security Systems offers state-of-the-art, reliable sensors, so contact us today for a quote.