Tuesday 26 May, 2020

6 COVID-19 safety measures for restaurants and workplaces

Image by 진영 박 from Pixabay

Image by 진영 박 from Pixabay

Director of Veterinary Public Health at the Ministry of Health, Dr Saed Rahaman, said a comprehensive plan should be created for all work and food places which prevent the risk of any transmission of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Speaking at Friday’s media briefing, Dr Rahaman said employers must communicate with employees and take their input in creating these new health and safety measures. He also advocated for sharing this information with trade unions to have all stakeholders on board.


Here are some safety directives to take note of when entering a workplace or buying food:

1. Healthy staff

Dr Rahaman said all staff should be healthy while on duty, if they are sick they should be sent home.

Employers should also check for signs and symptoms when staff arrive for work, for example, temperature checks.

Once they’ve been sent home, all work surfaces should be cleaned and controls put in place to prevent transmission among employees.


2. Clean spaces regularly

Dr Rahaman said frequent cleaning of work surfaces should be done at regular intervals.

Contact surfaces should be cleaned often throughout the day including doorknobs, bannisters, light switches, desk phones, elevator panels and other surfaces which experience regular contact with staff.


3. Wear face masks

Dr Rahaman said most food vendors must wear face masks while on duty. Customers should also be encouraged to wear face masks. Other safety measures such as plexiglass screens and other protective coverings can be utilised. 


4. Wash hands, wash hands, wash hands

Dr Rahaman said staff should regularly wash hands if they leave the room or do another activity, before and after returning to the workspace.

Water and soap should be readily available for this purpose - if not, hand sanitisers with at least 60 percent alcohol content should be available for use. 


5. Spacing

Workers and customers should maintain six feet of space between them and another person at all times. In work cafeterias, when sitting to eat, chairs should be spaced out suitably to allow for the required spacing.


6. Don’t mix dangerous chemicals when cleaning

Dr Rahaman warned against mixing dangerous chemicals and advised to simply use bleach and water, or soap and water. He advised a mixture of six tablespoons of bleach to a gallon of water for an effective cleaning solution.

For more information on health and safety measures, visit the CDC’s factsheet here: https://bit.ly/2WXvmuQ

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