Employers need to ensure that their workspaces are properly cleaned and thoroughly cleansed before employees report for duty once the lockdown has been lifted. That’s according to specialist cleaning service provider Fidelity Cleaning Services, as the country’s national lockdown stage is moved from stage 5 to stage 4.

“It is expected that large numbers of workers will be able to return to work this week, but it is critical to ensure that their workspaces are properly cleansed and that hygiene measures are kept at the highest possible level to prevent the possible transmission of the coronavirus,” said Fidelity Services Group CEO, Wahl Bartmann.

Efforts are continuing around the world to find a cure for the coronavirus. While these efforts continue, Bartmann encourages business owners and employees to make good personal hygiene habits part of their daily lives especially if they are back at work. “The virus is spread when someone who has COVID-19 coughs or exhales. Droplets of infected fluids can land on any nearby surface and objects, which makes regular and thorough cleaning and disinfecting more important than ever before,” said Bartmann.

The World Health Organisation and the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention have both released valuable advice on how employers and employees can take steps to control and prevent the spread of the virus at the workplace. “Our efforts to assist our customers across the country are based on these guidelines and on the advice provided by local health authorities in South Africa. Social distancing measures should also be part of this for the foreseeable future,” said Bartmann. At the workplace, employers should ensure the following:

  • Make sure your workplaces are clean and hygienic – Surfaces that are touched regularly (such as door handles, desks, tables, phones and keyboards) need to be wiped down and disinfected regularly
  • Promote regular and thorough hand-washing by employees, contractors, and customers – Put sanitising hand rub dispensers in prominent places around the workplace. Make sure these dispensers are regularly refilled
  • Display posters promoting hand-washing – Informational and educational posters can be downloaded from a number of websites, such as the South African Government and the CDC. Combine this with other communication measures such as offering guidance from occupational health and safety officers, briefings at internal meetings, and information on intranet sites to promote hand-washing
  • Ensure that face masks or paper tissues are available at your workplaces, for those who develop a runny nose or cough at work, along with closed bins for hygienically disposing of them
  • Encourage video conferencing or conference calls – While the country works to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus, it is better to avoid contact meetings if this is at all feasible
  • Hope for the best, but plan for the worst – Ensure that you have accurate contact details for any employee or visitor on hand, so that everyone could be contacted in case of an infection that occurs to anyone that visits your workplace. Allocate a room or a space where anyone that possibly thinks they have fallen ill, can be kept isolated until they can safely be transported for medical treatment if this becomes necessary

“My advice to any business owner is to make sure they have put the best possible measures in place to protect employees and customers. If you have any doubt about the measures you have taken, get in contact with your local health authority,” said Bartmann.

Provided by Em Between Communications.

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