Minimizing the spread Coronavirus infections
with Fever Detection
Infrared thermography can help detect elevated body temperatures which may indicate the presence of a fever.
As such, the use of infrared as an adjunctive diagnostic tool to help detect people with a potential fever may contain or limit the spread of viral diseases such as Covid-19 (coronavirus), bird and swine flu, or bacterial infections such as SARS.
The growth of international travel and economic migration require a consistent, prompt, effective and global disease prevention policy. Elevated human body temperature, or fever, is often a reliable indicator of many serious infections. Since the recent outbreak of serious flu strains such as Covid-19 (coronavirus) and the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), public health authorities have been looking for a fast, easy, contactless ( non-invasive), and reliable method to detect elevated human body temperature.
Can thermal cameras be used to detect a virus or an infection?
The quick answer to this question is no, but thermal imaging cameras can be used to detect Elevated Body Temperature. FLIR thermal cameras have been used in public spaces—such as airports, train terminals, businesses, factories, and concerts—as an effective tool to measure skin surface temperature and identify individuals with Elevated Body Temperature (EBT).
In light of the global outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), which is now officially a pandemic, society is deeply concerned about the spread of infection and seeking tools to help slow and ultimately stop the spread of the virus. Although no thermal cameras can detect or diagnose the coronavirus, FLIR cameras have a long history of detecting EBT in high-traffic public places through quick individual screening.
If the temperature of the skin in key areas (especially the corner of the eye and forehead) is above average temperature, then the individual may be selected for additional screening. Identifying individuals with EBT, who then can be further screened with virus-specific diagnostic tests, can help reduce or dramatically slow the spread of viruses and infections.
Using thermal cameras, officials can be more discrete, efficient, and effective in identifying individuals that need further screening with virus-specific tests. A variety of institutions, including transportation agencies, businesses, factories, and first responders are using thermal screening as an EBT detection method and as part of employee health and screening (EH&S).
Airports in particular are actively employing FLIR thermal cameras as part of their screening measures for passengers and flight crews. The screening procedures implemented at airports and in other public places are just the first step when it comes to detecting a possible infection: it’s a quick way to screen for anyone who might be sick, and must always be followed up with further screening before authorities decide to quarantine a person.
What FLIR cameras are used for thermal screening?
While governments outside the United States may choose from many different cameras, FLIR has a 510(k) filing (K033967) with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for select camera models for use as non-contact screening tools to detect differences in skin surface temperatures. These cameras include the FLIR Exx-Series, FLIR T-Series, FLIR A310, and Extech IR200.
Proven track record
The deployment of FLIR cameras in airports, terminals and company facilities is providing a noninvasive and highly effective method to screen passing crowds for elevated skin temperatures that might suggest a person has a virus.
The adoption of FLIR IR cameras is one small, but vital measure, to combat the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus). A selection of companies and organisations that have FLIR IR temperature screening systems in place:
Algeria Ministry of Health
ALSTOM Power Service
Australian International Airports
French Ministry of Health
Formosa Plastic Group
Hong Kong Airport Authority
Malaysia Ministry of Health
Morocco Ministry of Health
Tunisia Ministry of Health
Turkey Ministry of Health
UAE Ministry of Health
…and many more
Information regarding this application.
(click image to download document)
An extract from the World Health Organization Website:
Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.
Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. Detailed investigations found that SARS-CoV was transmitted from civet cats to humans and MERS-CoV from dromedary camels to humans. Several known coronaviruses are circulating in animals that have not yet infected humans.
Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.
Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
In general, thermal cameras are used to detect variations of surface temperatures. In the US, FLIR has certain camera models (designated as “ME”) which are certified by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use as a non-contact screening tool to detect differences in skin surface temperatures. These FDA-certified cameras (510(k) submission K033967) were designated with an intended use specifically in public areas (i.e., airports) to allow operators to visualize and document temperature patterns and changes. FLIR is aware of customers in several other countries using FLIR thermal cameras for similar purposes, including China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Philippines, and Malaysia. FLIR cameras are not intended, nor designed, to diagnose or detect medical conditions including, but not limited to, viruses or other illnesses. FLIR cameras should only be used to detect variations of surface temperature”
For more information regarding FLIR products and this application in Australia
please call us on 08 9248 6688
or contact your local Flir Distributor in your country