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Containing Swine Flu – Easy Screening of Passengers With Testo Thermal Imager
Category: Passenger Fever Detection | 04/09/2009 - 14:49:09
Swine Flu Containment
On June 11th 2009 the World Health Organisation raised the A/H1N1 virus to the highest risk level. The swine flu or Mexican flu has reached the status of a pandemic now. This means the disease is spreading over the continents. More than 70 countries have confirmed the appearance of the virus. Until now, more than 1,000 persons have died scattered over all continents. Besides the official number of confirmed cases several hundred thousand infections worldwide are assumed since many of them show such a weak course of disease that they are not noticed.
The global traffic of goods and passengers leads to a strong linking of today's world. Especially traffic junctions like airports are used by thousands of people every day. Person-to-person transmission can happen very easily and quickly. Health authorities worldwide are looking for possibilities of containment in order to avoid the further spread of the disease.
Human Swine Flu Symptoms
The measured medium body temperature of a healthy person is 36-37°C (measuring in the mouth or ear). Starting from a body temperature of 38°C, first fever symptoms can be assumed. Many doctors and ministries of health mention two main indications for a possible flu infection:
- Body temperature > 38°C AND
- Symptoms of an acute respiratory disease
Temperature measurement using the contactless infrared technology of thermal imaging cameras has proven to be a fast and uncomplicated way. Afflicted persons can be selected quickly and securely for a more thorough examination.
Temperature Measurement Methods
In crowded places the body temperature of individual persons can be monitored quickly with the help of infrared measurement. The following methods can be pursued:
1.Absolute temperature measurement with a calibrated thermal imager
An increase of the body temperature above 38°C indicates an infection. Due to the given inaccuracy of thermal imagers, every measuring instrument should be calibrated to the surface temperature of 38°C. With this, physical measurement effects on thermal imagers can be eliminated to a large degree. If environmental conditions such as temperature vary heavily, additional influences on the measurement result should be taken into account. Furthermore it must be considered that the body temperature is emitted by the skin differently. With testo 880 the hot spot function is therefore particularly helpful when measuring the face of examined persons.
2.Differential temperature between norm group and examinated person
In principle this measurement method works very much like the first method. The average temperature of a comparison group is simply used as a reference, under otherwise identical environmental conditions, instead of - as above - an absolute value of 38°C. The advantage of this measurement method is a reduction of specific influences of the surroundings, such as room temperature and weather.
With the help of thermal imagers, an easy-to-use and very efficient tool for detecting possibly infected passengers is available for airports.
Advantages Of The testo 881
- The measurement is very fast and efficient
- The screening of persons can be carried out for larger areas by use of wide-angle lens
- It is a non-invasive measurement method, harmless for the person to be checked.
- No contact with the potentially sick person is necessary, there is no potential health risk for the searching person.
- Intuitive operation, application with low effort
- Clear detection and assignment of critical values within the measurement image
- Hot spot detection
- Tripod assembly possible
- Very high temperature resolution below 80 mK
Institutions of many countries already use this technology. As the traffic junction between China and the country of origin of the swine flu, Mexico, Shanghai Pudong International Airport for example, has the difficult task, of protecting the nation with the world’s biggest population from an infection. With the help of the Testo thermal imager the Border Quarantine Department is scanning passengers and successfully detecting possible infections.
IR Measurement And Medical Approval
Testo instruments are designed for industrial applications and do not have a medical-technical approval. They can be used for fast and easy screening of persons. Any suspicious measurement result must be examined thoroughly and with appropriate medical means after the screening.