Walk-thru scanner could help screen people for illnesses

When it comes to reopening the economy and allowing people to safely work and gather again, a health detection scanner known as the SymptomSense Medical Evaluation Gateway may help minimize the threat of COVID-19

CEO Derek Peterson of Ronkonkoma-based Soter Technologies said that several thousand businesses and organizations nationwide have expressed interest in the scanner. 

"People want to have an assurance that when they go to work or go to, say, a ballgame that the person next to them is also well," he said. "What we've created is a device that doesn't use cameras, we're using proprietary technology. The combination of that allows us to get heart rate, respiratory rate, allows us to get blood oxygen level and also temperature."


Sensors use ultrasound to calculate a person's height to properly calibrate the scanner. Similar to a security checkpoint at the airport, someone will man the medical gateway that could potentially scan up to 1,000 people an hour. The cost $35,000. 

Dr. Fred Davis said it could be an efficient tool but added that it's important to remember a quarter of the people who have COVID-19 will present asymptomatic.

"Even upwards of three to five days before they're developing a fever, they can be infected and pass on the virus to others," Davis said. "That's something that would be missed here."

A metal detection option can also be added to the scanner to provide all-in-one access when we return to the new normal.



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