A New Virus Wave Is Incoming. Take Steps To Protect Your Employees
Early protection helps in preventing viruses spreading
2023 will be the first year in which coronavirus protections are largely stripped back, too, leading to a potential triple threat of coronavirus, flu and cold. Indeed, according to PBS WHYY, Philadelphia has already started to see bumps in coronavirus cases, nodding to the events to come. By now, every business should be very well acquainted with measures to keep infection rates down. Restoring those, and putting some simple measures in to keep the workplace clean, are an important and timely step to take.
Undertaking a deep clean
Many businesses might have let standards fall a little bit this year - and with good reason. Many of the measures brought in through 2020-2022 were done so with absolutely safety-first in mind; they aren’t necessary for a day-to-day management of infections. Despite this, it can be a good idea to take a full deep clean of the business. There is scientific information, and government protocol, that suggests it may indeed be time to undertake a deep clean given the challenges posed by these areas of the business.
According to the CDC, frequently used surfaces can often harbor a large number of different viruses, bacteria, and other potentially problematic issues. During periods of low footfall, or when cleaning protocols have been taken to a reduced level due to a lower risk, there can be gaps in coverage. As the cold season comes in it can be a really good idea to take a new safety first approach as such. Bring in experts if necessary - they can offer the expertise required to deep clean areas where sensitive technology sits in place. This will give you an excellent base level from which to base your business hygiene protocols.
Hand washing effectiveness
Hand washing and using alcohol gel became a ritual during lockdowns. Many businesses still provide those facilities, but they see less use. As virus season comes around, it is once again time to embrace handwashing. Studies have shown just how effective hand washing can be in preventing viruses, but it all comes down to preparation and technique. Businesses can help to enable that through providing handwashing stations, alcohol gel stations, and plenty of coverage throughout the business. Furthermore, it’s important that those areas are clean and well maintained. A well scheduled janitorial and/or custodial service can help to make sure all of this is in place and being well used.
Exacerbating the problem
Part of the reason virus season becomes so risky is the rising challenge posed by other risks. The wet, humid and then cold weather will bring with it other diseases, and can also create building circumstances that are risk-laden in terms of structure and control. These can include damp, mold, and otherwise swampy environmental circumstances.
While not immediately anything other than unpleasant for workers and visitors, there are very clear risks associated with mold and other environmental hazards in the workplace. Indeed, studies have very clearly highlighted the link between patients with asthma and sensitivity to mold and allergens. An underlying reaction to mold and seasonal allergens, combined with a seasonal virus such as flu, cold or coronavirus, can very quickly result in severe circumstances for people with underlying respiratory conditions.
The value of cleaning
As well as cleaning often visited spots, putting in new protocols and principles for staff and visitors, and undertaking a survey and cleaning of any underlying issues, it can be helpful to conduct a top-to-bottom clean of the property. It was very common to see infections springing up from places you might not have perceived there to be a risk, and so it was incredibly important to get in and clean every last spot of the business.
The same is true now. Taking an absolute safety first approach to viruses as the cold season approaches, and taking an all-in approach to cleaning, will be to the benefit of the business. More generally, it will improve the overall look and feel of the business, enhancing its reputation. Taking the opportunity to deep clean outside areas of dirt, grime, and detritus, taking the time to get windows into a sparkling clean position, and generally just taking pride in every area of the business, will help in showing employees they are safe and will highlight risks.
Don’t take viruses for granted. They will remain as deadly and damaging as they ever have been, and will come in a triple threat risk factor this season. Protect your business through top-to-toe deep cleaning and by bringing safety measures back in from the cold. You, and your employees, will thank yourselves once the temperatures drop and the coughs and colds start to become a reality.
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