The world waits in suspense. Almost everything of major public importance doesn’t allow groups to meet in public.
Will coronavirus unleash complete havoc? Some may say it already has. But the effects could get far worse than the United States’ 3700 cases and 69 confirmed deaths so far.
And possibly, with the help of action from the public and private employers, it might not get too much worse.
What can your workplace do to minimize its potential to spread?
Here’s a summary of the CDC’s recommendations:
1. Tell Your Sick Employees to Stay Home
Employees with fevers and symptoms of respiratory illness should stay home. They should not return to work until they have been free of symptoms for at least 24 hours.
You may need to investigate temporary or contract workers to help you make it through the next few months. Consider cross training some employees also. Or, let them work remotely from home.
2. Send Sick Employees Home
Any employee with even just minor signs of respiratory illness (cough, sniffling, sneezing, shortness of breath) should just go home. While still at the office, they should cover their noses or mouths with a tissue or use their elbow until they leave.
3. Educate Employees to Use Proper Respiratory Etiquette and Hand Hygiene
Use whatever you need to communicate with employees and embed what they need to do in their minds. Posters, emails, simple websites, texts, social media…whatever forms of communication they use most.
The more consistently they see the message, the more likely they are to not overlook what to do.
Proper respiratory etiquette includes covering your mouth and nose as mentioned in tip number two, as well as washing your hands after coughing or sneezing into them. Proper hand washing regimen includes singing “Happy Birthday” to yourself two times while washing your hands.
4. Put Your Office-Cleaning Routine on High Alert
You may have to ask your janitorial team how they will respond. Make sure they step up the frequency of their cleaning of commonly touched surfaces.
You may also ask your employees to help in this too. It’s really hard to overdo it during these uncertain times.
Ultimately, you can’t control how far coronavirus spreads. It only takes one careless person to cause it to spread widely. But, with these steps, you can dramatically reduce your risk.
So, do your best. And prepare to adjust in an instant should things go an unexpected direction.