Infrared thermometers are widely used in most public places like shopping malls, schools, restaurants and so on as part of screening and preventive measures during the pandemic. Those with body temperature above 37.5°C are not allowed to enter a premises.
Lately, there was claims on social media that infrared thermometers can caused brain injury, especially to pineal gland. Ministry of Health (MOH) has denied the claims.
Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the non-contact infrared thermometer was not a shooting device emitting radiation, reported by NST.
“It is designed to detect and absorb heat in the form of infrared rays emitted from human body and converts it into electricity. The electronic circuit within the thermometer processes the electrical signal to determine the temperature and display the reading on a screen. Since infrared thermometers do not emit harmful radiations, it is safe to use,” he said.
He noted that the laser used in the thermometer emits energy less than 1 mW cm2, which is even lower than infrared from sunlight.
A rapid review conducted by Health Technology Assessment Section (MaHTAS), the Health Ministry found no scientific evidence on the adverse effects of infrared thermometers used on the forehead, he said.
To date, a total of 64 brands of infrared thermometers had been registered and permitted to be imported and supplied in Malaysia. Anyhow, MOH was aware of the availability of infrared thermometers that were not registered or had no special access permission in the market.
Info via NST