Should You Invest In A Thermal Scanner?

- Aug 21, 2020-

With the development of the epidemic, more and more companies need to open for normal operations. At this time, thermal scanner can help these companies to conduct daily operations more safely.

The technology uses infrared cameras that can detect elevated skin temperature from a distance, quickly and accurately. Fever is one known symptom of COVID-19.

Scanners are placed strategically near building entrances that employees, visitors, contractors or customers have to pass through. Depending on the user's preference, an audio or visual alarm is triggered when a higher-than-normal temperature is detected. An alert is sent through a online system to the designated supervisor, avoiding the cost of having an employee check temperatures manually.

A thermal scanner is not a medical device. It cannot detect COVID-19 or ensure that no one carrying the virus will enter the workplace. One study of over 30,000 people showed that only 12 percent who were infected had a fever of 100 degrees or higher. Plus, as many as 45 percent of people with COVID-19 have no symptoms but are still contagious.

Nonetheless, thermal scanners may be worthwhile if crowds of people need to be screened at one time—such as at airports, sporting events, concerts or food-processing plants. Scanners may also be an effective first line of screening at any workplace when combined with other checks, such as having workers fill out risk-factor questionnaires before they enter the workplace and delivering consistent messaging that employees should stay home if they feel sick.

For smaller companies, we recommends a $400 "thermal scanner" for one-at-a-time screening. Other scanners may start at $1500.

How It Works

The thermal scanner is generally recommended to be placed at the entrance, such as an entrance guard. Our new thermal scanner also has a disinfection function, so employees can disinfect their hands while measuring temperature.

Before all this happens, employers should develop a plan about how to proceed if a high temperature is identified. If desired, an entrance door could be locked automatically before a staff member arrives.

A second temperature check is recommended for anyone who is flagged. The subsequent reading should be through a different method and in another location apart from others and where questions can be answered privately.