lundi 16 mars 2020

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Can companies and workplaces increase the speed of the spread of the COVID-19 virus?

Companies and workplaces are among the places that may increase the speed of the emergence of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) because they are places where a large number of people, including workers and employers, meet. Therefore, the American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a guide to this. A group of people to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus and these precautionary precautions are detailed below.

For employers: Procedures for preventing COVID-19 in the workplace

Although there is not enough information available about the details of the outbreak of the emerging coronavirus, the American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is working hard with the US health ministries to reach comprehensive information about this virus and has issued a preventive statement about limiting the spread of the emerging coronavirus in the workplace, It is worth noting the importance of adherence to it, regardless of the ethnicities of the companies and their citizens, and among these procedures are the following:

Encouraging the injured to stay at home:

  • Take care to disable people who have any severe respiratory symptoms, and do not return to work until 24 hours after the fever has disappeared and none of its symptoms or other symptoms appear (without taking any medicine including fever-reducing medications).
  • Ensure the flexibility of satisfactory departure policies and ensure that they are clear to the employees.
  • Individuals with respiratory infections not restrict their medical report to accept their sick leave or sick leave, as health centers and health care providers are busy, and they may not have enough time to write medical reports on time.
  • Flexibility to allow employees to stay in their homes if they are responsible for caring for a family member with an emerging krona.

Isolation of symptomatic staff:

It is worth isolating individuals who have any severe respiratory symptoms, whether when they come to their workplaces, or if they appear during working hours, and it is worth these individuals to go to their homes immediately while emphasizing the necessity of their use of tissues when coughing and sneezing.
  • Emphasizing the importance of adherence to cough etiquette and sterilization of hands.
  • Creating flyers that explain cough etiquette, how to disinfect and wash hands, and make sure to distribute these leaflets at entrances and frequently used workplaces.
  • Providing paper napkins to all employees, taking care to provide places with garbage cans that can be opened without touching them.
  • Giving special instructions for using a hand sanitizer that contains no less than 60-95% of alcohol, or washing hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds. It is indicated that soap and water are the best options if the hands are dirty.
  • Providing workplaces with soap and water, and hand sanitizers, and ensuring that they are available continuously. Hand sanitizers can be placed in meeting places to encourage employees to use them.

Cleaning the work environment periodically:

  • Take care to clean all surfaces in the work environment, such as door handles, offices, etc., using appropriate cleaning materials after reading the instructions for their use, and that doing so is sufficient so far, and there is no need for further sterilization.
  • Providing wet wipes for employees, which they can use to wipe different surfaces before using them.

For Employers: How to Manage the Risks of a COVID-19 Outbreak

All employers should prepare and develop plans to protect employees from the COVID-19 virus without affecting their business continuity. One of the main things that must be taken into consideration is the need for all sick employees to stay away from their workplaces, and encourage employees to observe the etiquette of coughing and sneezing And the need to sterilize hands periodically, in addition to sterilizing the surfaces used periodically.

Make a plan for the work environment to deal with the disease in the event of an outbreak in the state: It is worth managing and administrators to know the best ways to help reduce the spread of the emerging coronavirus and reduce the chance of its spread in their work environments, and attention should be paid to the objectives of Employees, protecting all individuals, especially those vulnerable to severe cases of the emerging coronavirus, maintaining the workflow as possible, and reducing the harm that may be caused to all who deal with them, it is worth noting that there are a set of factors that chiefs must take into account when making the decisions References on how to deal with the disease:
  • The severity of the emerging coronavirus, its prevalence and the number of deaths in the area where the company (or workplace) is located.
  • Staff ages and health conditions, like the elderly and the chronically ill, are more likely to develop severe cases of the emerging coronavirus if exposed to it.
Preparing for the absence of the employees, either because of their illness or caring for the infected:
  • Create an appropriate plan to monitor employee absenteeism and deal with it positively, as chiefs should ensure that the core operations are carried out, at least even if more expected employees are absent.
  • Exchanging experiences between employees in a way that ensures the conduct of basic operations, even if officials are absent.
  • Evaluating the basic functions of the company and the extent to which society and consumers depend on them, and taking measures based on that, as it is possible to adopt alternative resources or stop some operations if necessary.
  • Delegates officials and superiors working in more than one environment to other managers in those environments to limit their mobility.
  • Coordination with local health officials
The role of employers in developing a response plan for the COVID-19 outbreak:
  • Ensure the flexibility of the plan, and involve all employees in its development and review.
  • Hold intense discussions and experiment with the plan to discover any problems or gaps and correct them before applying them.
  • Share the plan with employees, and clarify their human resource policies, which is the flexibility of leave and leave policies.
  • Sharing the best of the plan with other companies in the local community, especially those specialized in the same field, and with the chambers of commerce and associations, to develop the community's response efforts to the disease and its spread.
  • Identify work-related health risks that may lead to employee transmission of the virus.
  • Review HR policies to ensure that they are consistent with public health recommendations, and with local and federal labor laws.
  • Study the possibility of developing policies and practices, such as flexible working hours, or flexible work sites, such as working from home or remotely, to keep employees away from each other, and to remove employees from others, in addition to encouraging employees by officials to work from home until symptoms disappear completely, In conjunction with ensuring that all technical requirements and infrastructure are in place to support the work of a group of employees from the home at the same time.
  • Define the necessary matters and roles to ensure the workflow within the company or institution, and set a plan to ensure the continuation of work and production in the event of an increase in the number of employees absent from work, or in the event of a breakdown or interruption in any of the steps necessary for the conduct of the production process.
  • Prepare the necessary documents and procedures, define incentives to activate the company’s plan to respond to or stop infectious disease outbreaks, as well as make appropriate adjustments in commercial operations, such as changing or closing business operations in affected areas, in conjunction with the transmission of basic business information to key employees of the company, and working with Health officials in the area to determine the triggers or factors that may require all of the above.
  • Develop a plan to prevent employees from gathering together in the same place, to reduce direct communication between them, and between employees and the public, when recommending that public health officials do so.
  • Create a method for communicating information to employees and business partners about the company's plans to respond to an outbreak of infectious disease, and the latest information and developments about the COVID-19 virus, taking into account the anticipation of widespread anxiety, fear, rumors, and false information about the virus, and planning accordingly.
  • May occur in some societies and in the event of an outbreak of the virus, especially the suspension of work hours in schools and kindergartens, which may be associated with the increased absence of employees to take care of their children at home, or care for a family member infected with the virus, which may require companies to develop flexible policies to support work These employees are from home, and their departures.
  • Decisions about community-level strategies that public health officials usually take are influenced by local conditions, so employers must take the time to get to know the plans in the communities in which they own businesses.
  • Participate with local and international health departments to find ways and communication channels to spread information about the virus's spread and spread.

For workers: How to act in case of suspected COVID-19 infection

  1. Adhere to general precautions, including washing hands with soap and water, or using an alcohol-free hand sanitizer that contains 60-95% of alcohol.
  2. Do not hesitate to ask for departures and leave in case of suspected COVID-19 infection or if you feel tired and sick.
  3. Cooperating with employers in applying preventive precautionary policies that reduce the chance of COVID-19 spreading to ensure business continuity and durability as possible.
  4. Wipe surfaces with wet paper towels before using them.
  5. Commitment to preventive measures when planning business trips:
  • Be sure to read the instructions of the American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention related to travelers.
  • Ensure that you do not feel any respiratory symptoms before you travel and inform the responsible supervisors if you feel them.
  • Notify the supervisor in case the employee feels tired or sick during his travel, taking care to contact him with the health care provider if needed.

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