Thermology Expert: "95-99%" Doing Fever Screening Wrong, Unjustified Compensating Algorithms "Insane"

By Charles Rollet, Published Aug 27, 2020, 12:25pm EDT

A thermology expert tells IPVM "95 to 99% of people" are doing fever screening "wrong" and said "unjustified" compensation algorithms are "unacceptable" and "insane" (many new fever camera vendors, such as Dahua, deploy such algorithms).

UPDATE 8/31: the expert updated his language in an email to IPVM, see this comment for his preferred version.

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IPVM interviewed Dr. Robert Schwartz, Chairman of the Board of the American Academy of Thermology. The AAT covers all thermal imaging medical applications, including fever screening.

For this interview, which has been condensed and edited for length and clarity, IPVM discussed the many mistakes operators make when fever screening, the rise of handhelds, whether the FDA should be doing more enforcement, and more, including:

  • "95 to 99% Of It Is Being Done Wrong"
  • "First We've Heard of This": Unjustified Compensating Algorithms "Unacceptable"/"Insane"
  • System Without Blackbody "Isn't Reliable" Without Calibration
  • Simultaneous Screening Means "You're Not Getting Accurate Temperature"
  • "No Good Evidence" For Forehead Screening By Fever Cameras
  • "6-8 Feet" Is "Ideal" Distance For Fever Cams
  • "You Can't Measure Skin Temperature Through Baseball Hats"
  • Handheld IR Thermometers "Pretty Useless" Without Best Use Recommendations
  • FDA "Needs To Be Tougher" On Charlatans
  • Is Anyone Doing It Right? "Some Are, Most Aren't"
  • Conference, Courses Recommended

AAT **********

******* **** **** **** thermal *******, ********* *** non-fever ******* ************, ************* *********. ******* ** ****, the ******** ******* ** Thermology********* ******** "* ******** ****** professional ************ ********* ** the *********** ** ******* infrared *******".

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*** *** ******* ****** ********** ***** ********* *** businesses *** ***********, *** the ***** ****** *****:

Dr ******** **********

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** ************ * ******* ********** **********, ***** ******** and *** *** ** at ***** ***** ********** School ** ******** ** Detroit. ** **** **** he *** **** ********* thermal ******* *** ******* purposes "***** *** ***" and ****** *** ***'* Chairman ** ***** ***.

"95 ** **% ** ** ** ***** **** *****"

**** **** *** * boom ** '***** ******' solutions *** ** *****-** (*** ******* *****-******* *********** Fever ****** ******).******* *** ********* ** detailed*** *************** *********** ***** *********, **** end ***** **** ******** these *********, *** ******* setting ** ******* ******* ********/************* ******** *** *********** to ****** **** ************.

**. ******** ****** *** current ********* "* *** mess", ******* **** "**** people *** ***** ** wrong":

Most ****** *** ***** ** *****. It's something we don't want to see happen. We don't want to a see people reach wrong conclusions and think they're doing something of valuable. As far I'm concerned, 95 ** **% ** ** ** ***** **** *****. It's a big ****. [emphasis added]

"First **'** ***** ** ****": *********** ************ ********** "************"/"******"

**** ******* ** *****'* thermal ****** ************** * "************ ************ algorithm" **** ************* ******* measured ************ ** ******* temps ****** ** * "normal" ***** ****, ***** results ** ****-****** ************ on ******** ******** ***** face **** ********* ** even ****** ************* **. We *********** *** ********** impact ** **** *****:

*** ** ********** **** this, **** ********* *** under *** ******** ********** their ******* *** ******* "smoothly" **** ** ******/***** readings. ***** **** **** this ********* ** "****** confidential ************ ********" *** declined ** ***** ******* details.

**. ******** **** **** this *** *** ***** time ** *** ***** of **** ******* *** was **** ****** ** comment ** *** ******** company's *********. *******, **. Schwartz *** ***** **** generally ********, ** ********* which ************* ******* ************ to *** **** ***** be "******* ************" *** even "******":

It's *** ***** **'** ***** ** ****. Compensating or self-correcting any temperature would ** ******* ************. On what basis are they doing that? What do they think they're even measuring temperature if they're just changing the temperature [displayed]?

** ****'* **** ****'** doing, ****'** ******* *** basic ******* **** *** need ** ** ********* body ***********, *****, *** something ****. *** ***'* measure *** ****** **** chair *** ***, **, we *** **** ***********.It's ****** ******** [...] it's certainly outside of recognized protocol. [emphasis added]

System ******* ********* "***'* ********" ******* ***********

*** ** **** ********, some *** ***** **** omitted ***** *******,******* *******'* *****-******* ****** district.

**. ******** **** ** blackbody "***'* ********" ****** some ***** *********** ****** is ***** ****, **** as ********* ********* * sample ** ** ****** for **********:

** ***'** ***** * medical ***** [******* ******] then *** **** * blackbody ** *******. ** you're *** ********** ********** and ********* ******* * comparator, ***'** *** ********* something *** *** ***. Any ****** **** *****'* have * ********* ******* grade ***'* ********.

*********** ** *********'* *********** ****** ****** *** lower ******** ******* * blackbody. **** *** *** seen *** ************ ******** taking ******* ******* ** people's ************.

Simultaneous ********* ***** "***'** *** ******* ******** ***********"

**. ******** ****** **** simultaneously ********* **** ****** accurately *** ****** **********, stating *** ****** *** to ** "*** **** center" *** **** ********** person **** * "******* 20 ****** ********":

The ****** *** ** ** **** * **** top **** ******, in front of the person at a maximum ** ****** ******** from the surface being measured, or you're not even close [to being accurate]. If you look at something straight dead forward, any angulation of the infrared image will make it degraded. How can you do 30 faces at once? How is that possible? Infrared *****'* *** ****** ******. An infrared camera, if you're not top dead center, you're not getting an accurate temperature, it just doesn't happen. [emphasis added]

**. ******** *** *** comment ** *** ******** company's *********. **** ********* has ********* ********* *** ***************** *********** ** ** people *** ****** ***** Sunell *** **** ****** off ************ ********* ** part ** ***'***** ***'*********:

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"No **** ********" *** ******** ********* ** ***** *******

**. ******** ****** "*****'* no **** ********" *** forehead *********** *** ***** cams ******* ** **** external ******* *** ****** someone's ******** **** (********, rain, ***). ****** *** forehead, *** ***** *** (canthus) "***'* **** ******* substances" *** ** *** "closest ** *** ***" to **** ****:

*****'*no **** ******** for doing forehead measurement compared to the medial canthus. Is using the back of your hand on the forehead of a child who feels sick a reliable way to detect fever? No. One of the reasons is that they've been sweating ******* ****'** **** *******, ** *** */* ** ****** ***** ******** ****. What's been established is the medial canthus or tear duct. In general, you don't **** ******* ********** ** **** ***, **** **'* ***** ** ***** ******* *****. The moist surface in your eye is the closest we can get to the moist surface in the mouth. It's about 1 degree Celsius lower. [emphasis added]

*********,******,***, *** **** ***** fever *** ******* ******* temperature **** ** *** forehead. **** **** *** ************** ***** *****/********* ********** found ******** ********* *** "generally ******** ********** ** oral *********** ******** ** the ***** ******", *.*. significantly **** ********.

** ** *****, **. Schwartz *** ***** **** under ******* ************* **** as ******* ***********, ******** devices (***** ******* ******** temperatures) *** ****** ** deployed **** **** ********. For ****, *** *** section ** *********.

"6-8 ****" ** "*****" ******** *** ***** ****, *-** ****** *** *********

********* ********* ***** ****** getting ***** ******** ** cameras **** ****** ** feet ****, .*.*.*** ***** ********* ** for ***** ****:

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******** ***********, ******* *** FDA *** *** *** recommend ******** ********* *** fever *******.

**. ******** ****** "*-* feet" ** ***** *** most **** *******. **** medical-grade ******* *** ** further, *** **** ******** is *** **** ******** generally ********.

*-* **** ** ***** it. ** ******* ******** on **** ****** *** your ***** ** ****. Does ** ****-*****, ** you **** **** ***'** doing?

*** ******** ** ************, 6-12 ****** ** *****, Dr. ******** *****.

"You ***'* ******* **** *********** ******* ******** ****"

**. ******** ********* *** idea **** ******** *********** measurement *** ******** ** people **** **** ************, something******** ********************** ***** *********** *************** ********:

** *****'* *****external ******* **** ******** ****, *******, you're *** **** ***** * ***********. Today I'm doing an apple, tomorrow concrete, tomorrow skin. It doesn't even matter if you had software correcting for what you're measuring. You ***** ***'* ******* **** *********** ******* ******** ****. You would never put an oral thermometer on someone's baseball hat - you wouldn't even bother!

*** * ************ ********* example, ********'* *********** ***** **** 200,000+ ********** *********** ********* ** individuals ******* **********, ****, masks, *******, *** **** a ******:

Handheld ** ************ "****** *******" ******* **** *** ***************

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******** ** ************ ** 'guns' **** ****** **********, yet **. ******** ****** they *** ****** ********** as **** *** *** calibrated *** **** ***** field-of-view:

*** *********aren't **********. **** **** **** ***** *****-**-****. They have to be right on top of the person anyway, and if you're going to do that you need to do some calibration procedures. It's just not built for this.

************, *** *** *** created * ****** *** their ***, *** ** an *********** *** ****** because *** ******* *** devices **** ******. ** using ***** ***************, **** as *********** *** ****** by ********* ********* * sample ** ** ******, accuracy *** ** ********:

*******,the ** ************ *** ****** *******, but I say that a little tongue-in-check because we **** ******* * ***** * ******** ****** *** ***** ***. Just so people don't use these devices on someone coming in from outside in 100-degree weather and point the device at their bandanna. Some people are going to use these handhelds, maybe if they own a small restaurant or whatever [emphasis added]

**. ******** ****** **** while *********, ******* ******* cameras *** **** **** accurate **** ******** ********* and *****:

** ******** ******, *** know *** *** *** from ******* **** **** and *** *** ************* select *** ****** ******* of *** ***. *** big ********* ** * thermal ****** **being **** ** ****** ******** instead of being 6-12 inches near a person. [emphasis added]

FDA "***** ** ** *******" ** **********

*** *** ********* '***** cams' ******* ******* *** they ********** ******** *** clearance ***** ** ************/****/***********. However, ** *****, *** FDA ******** **"*** *** ****** ** object"** ***-******* ***** *** sales ** **** ** guidelines **** ********. ******, violations ** ***** ********** are **** ******, *** an ******* ****** ******** even ****** ****** ** was *** ********* ****** them.

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**. ******** **** **** the *** "***** ** be *******" ** "**********", while ***** **** **** areas ***** **** ***** be **** *******, **** as ******** ***** ** use *** **** "*****" directly:

**** ****** ** *** in *** ***, ***** are **** ****** *****. On *** **** ** it ***'** ****** ** harder *** ****** ** do ** ***** - they **** * **** time **** *** *** too. *** **** ** the ***** ****you **** *** ***** ********** *** ***** *** *** *** ***** ** ** *******. They are out-of-date and in many ways, in my opinion, their compliance is overly ridiculous and other times not strong enough. [emphasis added]

**. ******** ** "******'* be *********" ** *** FDA *** *** ** cracking **** *** **** very *********:

**** **** ***** ** based ** ***** ***** is ****'** *** ** 6 ****** ***** ** something ****** '**** ** all *******' *** ******* lots ** ******* *******. I ******'* ** ********* at ***. *** *** knows *** **** ****'** take, ** ***** ** two *****.

** ** ****, **. Schwartz ******* ******'* ***** ********* **********, ***** ** **** are "**** **********" **** the ***'*. **. ******** stated *** *** *** had "**** **************" **** the *** ** *** past, ********* ***** ***** screening.

Is ****** ***** ** *****? "**** ***, **** ****'*"

***** *** **** ******** made ** ***-*****, **** asked ******* ****** *** actually ********* ***** **** correctly *** ******* **** systems **** **** ***** it ** *** ***** place. **. ******** **** these ************** **** "** **** as **'* *** ** right", ****** "****" ***** are ***** ** *****, even ****** "**** ****'*". One ******* **** ** doing ****** ***** ** a ***** ***** ** Ford, **. ******** ****:

** **** ** **'* set ** *****, **'* possible. ** *** * Level * ****** **** ICI *** **** ***** Company *** **** *** it *****. **** ** have ** **** ************ screening ******** ** ********* of *********, ** ** certainly *** ** ****.

Conference, ******* ***********

**. ******* **** **** that "****** ********** ** learning *** ***** ***", from ** "************* ***** of *******" ****** ******** for ******* ******* *** ****** Scientific ********* ** **** **** 12 & ** ***/** take ******'* **** ****** ***** screening ******.

**********, *** * ******* of **** *********, **** recommends ********* *** ***** on*** ************* ***** ********* Standards****** ******* ******* ********* of "***** *******".

Comments (14)

****, *** ***** ***** is *** **** **** of "******** *******" ** you *** ** ********. It ***'* ** **** you ******** ****, *** to ******* *** ******* of ******.

Agree: 8
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny: 1

******* **, *** ***** is******* ********** *** ****** than ********** (** *** U.S.). ** **** * good **** *** ***** to ** ***** ******* techniques ** ******** ******?

Agree: 2
Disagree: 1
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

***** ** **** ***** thing ************* **** *******. Sometimes ******* *** **** get ****** **** ****** to **** ****** ** motion, *** ***** ***** it ********** ******** ******* and ******** ** ******** of ****** ** * circumstance **** *** ** rather *********. * ** constantly ******* **** **** in ** **** ** work.

Agree: 1
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

** ****** **** ** you ********** "** ** right" *** ******** ** Covid-19 ******** ******* ******** will ** ************** ** asymptomatic ******.

Agree: 9
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

******** ***** ** *** one ** **** * dozen ****-**** ******** ********* to *** ***. * system **** ******* *** several ********** ** **** is **** **** ***********, as * ******* *** exhibit *** ** *** symptoms, *** *** *** for *******. **** **** old ********* ***** ********* would ** * **** way **** ** ****** coughing, ********, ***.

Agree: 1
Disagree: 1
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Funny

*** ***** *** ********* systems **** ****** ******** and ******** ?

***

Agree: 1
Disagree
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Unhelpful
Funny

*** **** * **** of, *** ********* ******* CV ******** ***** **** EBT *** ** **** with ********** ***-**** ** development.

Agree
Disagree: 1
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

****** *** ******* **** - * ********** *** the ****** ******.

Agree
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Funny

******** ** *** ****, Charles! *********** ***** ***** the ******** ** ************, which **** ****** ****** commonplace ** ******. * usually *** ******** ** the ********* ** *** of *** ****** ** security ****** *** ************* with ******** *** ** least ******* ***** ******, at *** ********* ** office ******, ***********, *****, shops, ********, ***. ** seems ** **** ****** a*** ************* ** * **** noticed * **** ****** of ******** ****** ** not **** ***** *** result. *** ***** ***** their **** ** ******** and **** *** *********** is ***********, ** * recently ******* *** **** that ** ***** *********** returned ** **°* (*.*. 87.8°F); * ****** **** been ****! ☠️

Agree: 1
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** ** ******* ******** to *** **-** ***** at **** ** *** right ******** *** ** social ******** *******.

"*** *** *** ** 30 ***** ** ****? How ** **** ********?"

Agree
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Funny

***** *** ****** ** 95 ** **% ** from?

"** ** **% ** It ** ***** **** Wrong"

Agree
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

******: **. ******** **** IPVM ** ******* **** using *** ***** ******. We **** ******** *** edits *****:

"Likely 95 % ** ** ** ***** **** *****"

Most ****** *** ***** ** *****.**'* ********* ** ***'* want ** *** ******. We ***'* **** ** a *** ****** ***** wrong *********** *** ***** they're ***** ********* ** valuable. ** *** *'* concerned,********%of ** ** ***** **** *****. **'* *big ****. [******** *****]

"First **'** ***** ** ****": *********** ************ ********** ***'*eem ** **** *** *****"

**. ******** **** **** this *** *** ***** time ** *** ***** of **** ******* *** was **** ****** ** comment ** *** ******** company's *********. *******, **. Schwartz *** ***** **** generally ********, ** ********* which ************* ******* ************ to *** **** ***** be "**** ********* *** ***** ***** of **** *********** *********** for ***** *********":

It's *** ***** **'** ***** ** ****.************ ** ****-********** *** temperature**non **** ******** *** ************ **** *** ******** ******* ** *** **** ** ********* **** *********** **************. ** **** ***** are **** ***** ****? Wh*** ************* **** **** *************************** ** ****'** **** changing *** ************* ********* ****[*********]?

** ****'* **** ****'** doing, ****'** ******* *** basic ******* **** *** need ** ** ********* s**************, *** ********* ****. You ***'* ******* *** dining **** ***** *** say, **, ** *** body ***********.**doesnt **** ** **** *** *****[...] **'* ********* ******* of ********** ********. [******** added]

**. ******** **** *** ***** **************** *********** ***********"***'* ********" ****** **** other *********** ****** ** being ****, **** ** regularly ********* * ****** of ** ****** *** comparison:

** ***'** ***** * medical ***** [******* ******] then *** **** * blackbody ** *******.***** ******* ***** ******* are ****** *********, ** you *** ***** * hand **** ******'** *** ********** ********** and ********* ******* * comparator,*******'** ********* ****** *** ac******. * ****** **** doesn't **** * ********* medical ***** ***'************* *** **** ****.

"No **** ********compared ** ****** ******* (**** ****) ************ " *** ******** ********* **Hand **** Fever *******

**. ******** ****** "*****'* no **** **************** ** ****** ******* (tear ****) ************" *** ******** *********** for**** ********* **** ******* ** many ******** ******* *** affect *******'* ******** **** (sweating, ****, ***). ****** the ********, *** ***** eye (*******) ** *** "closest ** *** ***" to************ ******* ****** ******** ************ there ***"********* **********" ********* *** ******* ***** measured.

*****'*no **** *********** ***** ******** *********** compared ** *** ****** canthus. ** ***** *** back ** **** **** on *** ******** ** a ***** *** ***** sick * ******** *** to ****** *****? **. One ********* ***** ** **** ******** ***** ********sweating ******* ****'** **** *******, ** *** */*, **** ** ***** *** ****** *******************. ****'* **** *********** ** the ****** ******* ** tear ****. ** *******, youdon't **** ******* ********** ** **** ***, **** **'* ***** ** ***** ******* *****.*** ***** ******* ** your *** ** *** closest ** *** *** to *** ***** ******* in *** *****. **'* about * ****** ******* lower. [******** *****]

"*-12 ******" ***** ***** *** ******** ***** ****,6-8 **** ** *** "Ideal" ******** *** ***** ****

**. ******** ****** "*-* feet" ** ***** *** most*******************. **** ******* ***** *******, *** **** distance ** *** **** suitable ********* ********.

*-* **** ** ***** it. ** ******* ******** on **** ****** *** your ***** ** ****.***** ******* ** ******** are ** *** ******** can****-*****,*** ** *** ******** has **** ******** *******.

Handheld ** ************ "******* *******"

******** ** ************ ** 'guns' **** ****** **********, yet **. ******** ********** *********** ** ******* are ********* *** **** sensitive *** **** * high ****** ** *********** variance. ** ********, ** make **** **** ********* utility **** ************ ******** *** ** be ******************** ******* *** ********** *****-**-****:

*******,********IR ************ **** *****ed *******, *** * *** that * ****** ******-**-***** becausewe recognize **** *** ** **** *********** **** *** ***** ** ** ****. *** *** *** created * ***** * ******** ******** ******* *** *******. "We ********* ***'* *************** ***** ******* ** someone ****** ** **** outside ** ***-****** *******, ************* ****** ** ***** bandanna". [******** *****]

FDA "******* ** *** **********", "**** ****** ** ***** ***** ** *****"

**. ******** **** ****:

***** *** **** **********. ** *** **** of ** ***'** ****** it ****** *** ****** to ** ** ***** since**** *** **** ******* to *** ***** ******* measure *********** (*** *** does *** ***** *** term "***** *********") *** **** ** *** other ****you **** *** ***** ********** *** *****whose ******* **** *** **** ******** *** *** ****** *** ***** ** ******. *he *** ***** ** ** *******on *** ********** *** **** **** ****** ** ***** ***** ** *****.[******** *****]

**. ******** ** "******'* be *********" ** *** FDA *** *** ** taking ****** *** **** belatedly:

**** **** ***** ** based ** ***** ***** is****** *********** ************ ******* *******. * wouldn't ** *********** **** ********* ***. *** *** knows *** **** ****'** take, ** ***** ** two *****.

Agree
Disagree
Informative: 2
Unhelpful
Funny

** ******* ******* *** out ** *** ****** district ***** ******, **** might **** **** * better ****** ** ******* their ***** ****. **, the ****** ***** *** up ******* "****" ** someone ** ****** ** losing ***** ********. [**** speculation.]

Agree: 1
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

* **** **** ******* with ***** ********. * agree ***% **** **** users ** ******* ********* technologies *** ***** *** devise **********, **** **** are ******* *** ******* one ***** ****** **** using *** **** **********, poor ** ****!!

**** * ***'* ***** with ** *** ***** that ** ** ********** to *******/****** ******** ******* at * **** *** that *-* **** ** the **** ***** *** measurement. **** *** ** the **** *** *** of *** "**********" ******* that **** **** ********** for *** ***, ** is *** **** ** a **** ****.

***** ** * *******, OMNISENSE ******* ** ********* who **** **** ************* and ********* **** ** three ********** *** **** a ****** **** ** exactly **** **** ******** continually *** ** **********, 24/7, **** *** ******* results. **** **** ******** outdoors.

**** **** * ****, they ***** ** ***** to ***********.

Agree
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Informative
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Funny
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