Tactics to Keep You and Your Patrons Safe…Today and Tomorrow
With the COVID-19 vaccination now widely available, there’s hope businesses will begin opening back up with fewer and fewer restrictions. It’s critical, however, that organizations continue to implement best safety practices. This helps ensure there isn’t an outbreak or spread in your business that could compromise safety, your reputation, and your finances.
Here are ten effective prevention strategies your business can implement:
1. Washing Hands Frequently
This is one of the easiest and most effective ways to protect yourself and others against COVID-19. For the best results, wash your hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds. This should be done during the following activities:
- Preparing food.
- Caring for someone who you know to be ill.
- Using the restroom.
- Coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose.
- Touching your mask, eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Entering or leaving any public space.
- Coming in contact with a high-touch surface, such as shopping carts, cash registers, gas pumps, and more.
For more information, check out these detailed CDC handwashing recommendations.
2. Using Hand Sanitizer
If handwashing with soap and water is not a viable option, the next best solution is hand sanitizer. The CDC recommends using a hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. (This information will be contained on the product label.)
Consult with the label to see how much hand sanitizer you should use every time. As with handwashing, rub your hands together for approximately twenty seconds.
When should you use hand sanitizer and when should you not? Check out this breakdown from the CDC.
3. Wearing a Mask
As more research and evidence comes in and more people become vaccinated, the CDC has been updating its guidelines regarding mask wearing. Here is the latest guidance regarding cloth face coverings. Information and recommendations are being updated quickly as that research comes in, specifically for vaccinated individuals. Check back with the CDC website often to ensure you’ve in full compliance with the latest guidelines as things continue to change.
Until herd immunity is reached or the CDC eases its regulations, mask wearing remains one of the most effective and simple tools we have to fight against the virus.
4. Practicing Social Distancing
Social distancing was one of the CDC’s core recommendations from the onset of the pandemic, and it still plays an important part in mitigating the spread of the virus. Follow all local, state, and federal guidelines for occupancy rates within businesses.
Physically arrange your business to accommodate for social distancing, and have visible placards, window decals, or some other means of communicating your company’s policy regarding patron or employee spacing. You can have the best intentions and the best plan possible, but if nobody is aware of your protocol, it won’t get followed.
5. Cleaning Frequently
To keep your business as safe as possible, make sure you’ve updated your cleaning policies, if you haven’t already. Be especially diligent about cleaning high-touch areas, such as doorknobs. Unless you know or suspect somebody infected with the virus has been in your facility, cleaning once a day is within the CDC’s recommendations.
Use cleaning products that contain soap or detergent, and disinfect surfaces to kill any remaining surface germs.
Not sure what cleaning policies to put into place in your organization? See more information here.
6. Avoiding Those Who Are Sick
If you are ill, err on the side of caution. Inform your business of your symptoms, and refrain from going to work or out into public. Whenever possible, avoid contact with individuals who are sick. Even without symptoms, virus transmission can still occur, so it’s vital to be especially careful when somebody is exhibiting signs of COVID-19 illness.
7. Monitoring Your Health Daily
Be aware of your own health in order to ensure you aren’t transmitting the virus to others. Watch for telltale symptoms of COVID-19, including the following:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath
- Difficulty breathing
- Sore throat
- New loss of smell or taste
For a full breakdown of symptoms, including information about when to seek medical attention, read here.
8. Covering Your Sneezes or Coughs with a Tissue
The virus can be transmitted through the air. That means sneezing and coughing are two big potential spreaders. Follow the CDC’s guidelines for coughing and sneezing etiquette, including the following:
- Covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
- Throwing your used tissue immediately in the trash.
- Using the crook of your elbow (not your hands) if a tissue isn’t readily available.
- Washing your hands after blowing your nose.
9. Addressing Your Indoor Air Quality
The CDC knows the virus can be transmitted by exposure to infected respiratory fluids, and that occurs through inhalation; direct contact through splays or splashes; or transferring infected droplets and particles into your eyes, nose, or mouth by touching. (See here for more information about transmission methods.)
Thinking through ways to improve your indoor air quality can benefit you today (with COVID-19 specifically), but it can also work to keep your business and your patrons safe down the line from anything harmful and airborne.
When it comes to cleaning your indoor air, you have many options. See this breakdown of three highly effective methods of improving your indoor air quality: upgraded filters, UV technology, and air ionizing devices.
Just be certain the device you’re installing does not produce harmful levels of ozone. Read more about the dangers of ozone here.
For the greatest efficacy, layer your defenses against indoor air contaminants. For example, couple an indoor air quality system with proper ventilation and the introduction of outdoor air.
10. Getting the Vaccine
Prevention strategies are helpful, and guidelines regarding mask wearing, handwashing, and more should be followed to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Prevention strategies, however, are just that: preventative. If we want to stop the COVID-19 virus, widespread vaccination is the answer.
Getting the vaccine is, ultimately, a personal choice, but encourage your employees to get vaccinated. Set the tone by getting vaccinated yourself. While the CDC is still researching what percentage of the population would need to be vaccinated in order to reach herd immunity, the more people who can arm themselves through vaccinations, the better.
Here are the CDC’s key points about the vaccine.
Have technical questions about how to get the safest air in your business? Ask one of our experts today. We’re always happy to help educate and to get businesses on the path to clean indoor air!
10 Tips for Relieving Seasonal Allergies
Why Allergies Aren’t Going Anywhere Any Time Soon Sneezing. Itchy eyes. Runny nose. It’s that time…
Why Indoor Air Quality Is Important to Your Patrons' Safety and Health
3 Reasons to Reduce Airborne Contaminants in Your Place of Business Indoor air quality is…
Installing Indoor Air Quality Improvement Systems in Schools
Why Indoor Air Quality and COVID-19 Reduction Matter for Schools How CARES Act Funding Could Help…