May 20, 2020
Who’s hot. Who’s not.
- The touchless thermometers use infrared technology, and it is important to note, not all forehead thermometers are touchless.
- Children and seniors tend to have lower temperatures.
- Another option, one that is a larger investment, but potentially of great worth to certain venues is thermal imaging.
As we reopen, safety protocols must be put in place. Temperature checks are going to be a big part of those protocols for both employees and patrons. According to the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) employers are within their rights to temperature check employees. Customers, of course, choose to be at a venue, and are free to leave if their objections to protocols are insurmountable.
Benefits of temperature testing include that it can be contact free and is currently the quickest form of screening. Not to mention the only readily available method. However, although the administration itself is simple, there are interpretations to be made. Unless there aren’t. A business could pick a range and stick to it to the letter, or more accurately, the number, but what is that number?
98.6 (37 C) is the number most of us know as “normal.” Unfortunately for screening purposes, “Normal body temperature varies by person, age, activity, and time of day. The average normal body temperature is generally accepted as 98.6°F (37°C). Some studies have shown that the “normal” body temperature can have a wide range, from 97°F (36.1°C) to 99°F (37.2°C). A temperature over 100.4°F (38°C) most often means you have a fever caused by an infection or illness.” There are a couple problems with taking these numbers as gospel. First, people do vary. Is it best to take variations into account and raise the acceptable temperature when screening?
There have been studies done that have concluded human temperatures have dropped over the years, for several interesting reasons, including better healthcare in general and possibly the fact that our indoor climates are much more controlled. If this is the case, raising the upper limit would make a venue more likely to admit an infected individual. Additionally, children and seniors tend to have lower temperatures.
Depending on location, season, and screening process, it seems possible that temperatures could rise to unacceptable limits while potential customers wait in queue to be screened. To put it mildly, being turned away for being too hot after standing in the sun waiting to be temped will not go over well with many. Activity, as well as sweat and evaporation, are other factors that could influence no contact readings. These factors will need to be taken into account by businesses performing temperature screening.
There are multiple models available for purchase. The touchless thermometers use infrared technology, and it is important to note, not all forehead thermometers are touchless. We found a model put out by Elara for $54.98. It has four settings, three of which pertain to age, and one for objects. It selling points include “instant” readings. For the same price, the iHealth Labs touchless thermometer is available. This product has multiple sensors, one of which is meant to compensate for environmental temperatures. Both of these products, as well as other models are available from Amazon.
The KALENI infrared thermometer is 89.98 and also available from Amazon. This thermometer currently has a five-star rating (with 25 reviews). While 25 is not a huge number, it is significantly more than the numbers for other models with a five-star average, unfortunately not one of those reviews has been designated as a verified purchase. Make of that what you will.
Another option, one that is a larger investment, but potentially of great worth to certain venues is thermal imaging. Thermal cameras are able to read from a greater distance, and therefore encompass larger areas, or multiple subjects at a time. Traditionally, these devices have been used to assess components of construction, and electronics, however, their range of detection is large and inclusive of human body temperature. The Seek Thermal Revealpro is sold for 499.98, a price that is roughly mid-range for these devices.
The discussion of the models above should not be taken as endorsement. However, we plan to select several models to assess. We will report back, and as always, we love to hear your thoughts.