Coronavirus - Practical Advice

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We have received a number of requests for practical advice regarding limiting the risks from Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the workplace.

1. The UK government advises against travel to the following countries or states:

  • Cambodia
  • China
  • Hong Kong
  • Iran
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Laos
  • Macau
  • Malaysia
  • Myanmar (Burma)
  • Singapore
  • South Korea
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam

Anyone returning from these countries should contact NHS 111 if they have associated symptoms, and should self-isolate for 14 days, regardless of whether they have symptoms or not.

 

2. Staff who have any symptoms associated with the Coronavirus should self-isolate for 7 days and should be treated as off sick by their employers. Coronavirus symptoms are similar to those associated with a common cold - so this advice applies to those who may have a cold.

 

3. Staff who show symptoms should call NHS 111 and not come into work and not leave their homes. If they are already at work and show symptoms, they should be isolated at work, and you should phone NHS 111 for advice - in this situation, other staff should not leave either until you have obtained advice.

 

4. From a practical point of view, hand soap should be available in all staff facilities. Face masks are in short supply and are only required in high-risk situations, for example, healthcare professionals etc. - they limit onward transmission if you already have the virus - they do not prevent you from getting it.

 

5. If in the event schools are closed, staff will need to be given time-off for childcare or given time to arrange it, if possible. If any staff have children with symptoms, they should stay at home with their children and not come into work. Again call NHS 111. The same applies to staff who care for elderly relatives.

 

6. The provision of laptops and phones will help staff to continue working from home, where possible. This is just good planning, regardless of the issue, for example, if your office was closed due to flooding etc. So good laptops, phones and broadband should be a priority.

Coronavirus is easily transmitted, but recovery rates are very high. Those most at risk are the elderly and those with pre-existing medical conditions. To put this into perspective, approximately 30,000 people in the UK die annually from respiratory-related health issues caused by air pollution.

Relevant Policies & Packs
Coronavirus Policy
Sickness & Absence Policy
Employers Pack - Staff Handbook

Links
Nizagara Online
GOV.UK - latest information and advice
World Health Organization

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