March 16, 2021
Not all thermal imaging systems are created equal

Beware of unapproved Telethermographic Systems

A hot topic brought to you by SpecialtyRx, your partner in long-term care

 

Many LTC facilities are using thermal cameras as part of their Covid-19 protocols. These “fever cameras” are being used to check for elevated temperatures in staff, vendors and anyone else entering facilities.

The FDA is warning providers and consumers of these cameras that some of these thermal imaging systems may not be reading body temperatures accurately. According to the FDA, there are some out there who are marketing unapproved, uncleared and unauthorized devices. They recently issued warning letters to several different companies.

On a March 4th in a statement made by William Maisel, M.D., M.P.H., chief medical officer and director of the Office of Product Evaluation and Quality in FDA’s Center for De-vices and Radiological Health he claims,

“While thermal imaging is not an effective diagnostic device for COVID-19, it can determine if someone has an elevated temperature, which can be an important risk management tool during the pandemic when used prop-erly… but improper use and marketing of thermal imaging systems may lead to inaccurate temperature readings and pose a potential danger to public health.”

Those that received the FDA warning letters are listed on their updated Warning Letters page and COVID-19 related letters can be found on the Fraudulent Coronavirus Dis-ease 2019 Products page of their site.

While these scanners can be a useful tool in the fight against the spread of illness, it is important to choose one wisely.

 

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