Using Cameras To Control Virus Outbreaks

By Carlton Purvis, Published on Apr 08, 2014

More than 600 people got sick on a massive cruise ship outbreak in January 2014. While that might have been a record, it is a serious ongoing problem. Every year about a dozen cruise ships have outbreaks. Though it might not get as much attention as people falling overboard, it is a far more common problem.

Now, a maritime health organization is calling for cameras on ships to also be used for infection control in addition to security.

In this note, we review the report and how cameras can help contain an outbreak.

Background

Here is the incident that spurred the report:

A cruise ship’s command center is notified of a “fecal incident” in a hallway outside of a passenger's room. The ship activates its decontamination plan and begins investigating the incident. The ship’s doctor calls the passenger whose room was closest to the incident and she denies any gastrointestinal symptoms.

Security reviews CCTV and finds that she is the only person in the area around the time of the incident and had entered her room at around the same time of the incident. Footage also shows her walking toward the pool area, though she denies being near the pool.

A manager visits her cabin and presents her with the video evidence. She admits to having diarrhea in the hallway, using towels to clean it up and putting the towels in the pool towels bin.

She is quarantined to her cabin, put under surveillance and kicked off at the next port.

The Problem

Here's why the incident was such a big deal: Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that is spread by touching contaminated surfaces and ingesting the organism. It’s the most common foodborne illness in the U.S. and on ships. It can survive on surfaces for long periods of time and takes specific precautions to decontaminate.

Within hours after ingestion it can cause constant diarrhea and vomiting that lasts for around three days. The virus stays in human stool for up to two weeks after.

Disease spreads quickly on cruise ships. For this reason, the CDC has a Vessel Sanitation Program that focuses solely on preventing, monitoring and responding to outbreaks on ships.

How Cameras Can Help

Vomiting or diarrhea in a public area can quickly lead to an outbreak if not contained, the report says. People don't reliably self-report symptoms of gastrointestinal illnesses on ships so any additional tools are helpful.

The IMH says cameras can assist in finding and containing potential index cases by presumably quickly catching incidents that could lead to outbreaks or investigating outbreaks once they happen.

Using cameras on ships for infection control is a relatively new practice that has come about in the last six months. It has been used several times to identify people in public vomiting episodes where no person came forward.

"If we have people who are vomiting or find vomit, we can go back on CCTV and see who it was. We use that to match it with the photo they took when they got on board. [Once identified] we can isolate them or if they refuse isolation we can let them off the ship," said Dr. Arthur Diskin.

The reports notes that one company has instituted a policy that all vomiting or fecal incidents are now investigated via CCTV.

Cameras For Infection Control in Hospital Settings

Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News
Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News

Cameras have in the past been used at hospitals for infection control.

Hospitals in New York, London and San Francisco have installed cameras in facing sinks to insure employees are washing their hands. The cameras send alerts when a person doesn't wash their hands and the stats for the day are displayed on a digital monitor:

Digital Monitor:

The hospital says the system has helped raise handwashing compliance and reduce infection.

Comments (2) : Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

Integrators Hard Hit By Coronavirus on Mar 18, 2020
Integrators are already being hard hit by Coronavirus as brand new IPVM...
The Kiosk Market Pivots To Temperature Screening (Interviewed) on Jul 28, 2020
Video surveillance is not the only market that has pivoted to medical device...
London Live Police Face Recognition Visited on Feb 13, 2020
London police have officially begun using live facial recognition in select...
Coronavirus Hits Manufacturers, Standing Now, Worse To Come on Apr 06, 2020
Coronavirus is hitting security manufacturers, though overall modestly for...
Directory of 211 "Fever" Camera Suppliers on Oct 14, 2020
This directory provides a list of "Fever" scanning thermal camera providers...
Convergint Coronavirus Cuts on Mar 25, 2020
One of the world's largest security integrators, Convergint, has made a major...
The Booming Multi-Billion Coronavirus Fever Camera Market on Apr 21, 2020
The market for elevated body temperature detection cameras, aka 'coronavirus...
The Problem With Fever Detecting Thermal Sunglasses on Apr 15, 2020
While the media has promoted using thermal sunglasses to detect fevers, this...
China Manufacturer Suffers Coronavirus Scare on Feb 20, 2020
Uniview suffered a significant health scare last week after one of its...
Directory of 400+ Fever Camera News Reports Globally on Jul 22, 2020
This global directory tracks 400+ articles about thermal cameras used to...
Omnisense "Mass Fever Screening and Pandemic Control System" Examined on Jun 11, 2020
Omnisense Systems is marketing a "Mass Fever Screening and Pandemic Control"...
Anixter Runs Fake Coronavirus Marketing Using Shutterstock Watermarked Images on Jul 24, 2020
Coronavirus faked marketing is regrettably commonplace right now but Anixter...
Detecting Coronavirus Fevers With Thermal Cameras on Mar 15, 2020
MAY 2020 Update: This post was our early examination of these systems being...
Hands-Free Bathroom Doors For Coronavirus Mitigation on Apr 10, 2020
Coronavirus has increased concerns about picking up germs, especially from...
Bottom: Integrators Start To Stand Vs Coronavirus on Apr 20, 2020
Good news - IPVM integrator statistics show that while coronavirus has hit...

Recent Reports

ISC Brasil Digital Experience 2020 Report on Oct 23, 2020
ISC Brasil 2020 rebranded itself to ISC Digital Experience and, like its...
Top Video Surveillance Service Call Problems 2020 on Oct 23, 2020
3 primary and 4 secondary issues stood out as causing the most problems when...
GDPR Impact On Temperature / Fever Screening Explained on Oct 22, 2020
What impact does GDPR have on temperature screening? Do you risk a GDPR fine...
Security And Safety Things (S&ST) Tested on Oct 22, 2020
S&ST, a Bosch spinout, is spending tens of millions of dollars aiming to...
Nokia Fever Screening Claims To "Advance Fight Against COVID-19" on Oct 22, 2020
First IBM, then briefly Clorox, and now Nokia becomes the latest Fortune 500...
Deceptive Meridian Temperature Tablets Endanger Public Safety on Oct 21, 2020
IPVM's testing of and investigation into Meridian Kiosk's temperature...
Honeywell 30 Series and Vivotek NVRs Tested on Oct 21, 2020
The NDAA ban has driven many users to look for low-cost NVRs not made by...
Ubiquiti Access Control Tested on Oct 21, 2020
Ubiquiti has become one of the most widely used wireless and switch providers...
Avigilon Aggressive Trade-In Program Takes Aim At Competitors on Oct 20, 2020
Avigilon has launched one of the most aggressive trade-in programs the video...
Mexico Video Surveillance Market Overview 2020 on Oct 20, 2020
Despite being neighbors, there are key differences between the U.S. and...
Dahua Revenue Grows But Profits Down, Cause Unclear on Oct 20, 2020
While Dahua's overall revenue was up more than 12% in Q3 2020, a significant...
Illegal Hikvision Fever Screening Touted In Australia, Government Investigating, Temperature References Deleted on Oct 20, 2020
The Australian government told IPVM that they are investigating a Hikvision...
Panasonic Presents i-PRO Cameras and Video Analytics on Oct 19, 2020
Panasonic i-PRO presented its X-Series cameras and AI video analytics at the...
Augmented Reality (AR) Cameras From Hikvision and Dahua Examined on Oct 19, 2020
Hikvision, Dahua, and other China companies are marketing augmented reality...
18 TB Video Surveillance Drives (WD and Seagate) on Oct 19, 2020
Both Seagate and Western Digital recently announced 18TB hard drives...