The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has issues interim guidance is based on what is currently known about the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This interim guidance may help prevent workplace exposures to COVID-19 in non-healthcare settings (separate guidance is available for healthcare settings). This Guidance clearly shows the importance for Businesses and Employers of any size to develop expanded strategies for proper safety measures with regard to infection control. CDC has also provided guidance for critical infrastructure workers who may have had exposure to a person known or suspected to have COVID-19. Unless otherwise specified, this interim guidance for businesses and employers applies to critical infrastructure workplaces as well.
Businesses and employers can prevent and slow the spread of COVID-19 within the workplace. Employers should respond in a way that takes into account the level of disease transmission in their communities and revise their business response plans as needed. Employers should follow the White House Guidelines for Opening Up America Again, a phased approach based on current levels of transmission and healthcare capacity at the state or local level, as part of resuming business operations. Business operation decisions should be based on both the level of disease transmission in the community and your readiness to protect the safety and health of your employees and customers.
Businesses and employers are encouraged to coordinate with and local health officials to obtain timely and accurate information to inform appropriate responses. Local conditions will influence the decisions that public health officials make regarding community-level strategies. CDC has guidance for mitigation strategies according to the level of community transmission or impact of COVID-19.
As an employer, if your business operations were interrupted, resuming normal or phased activities presents an opportunity to update your COVID-19 preparedness, response, and control plans. All employers should implement and update as necessary a plan that:
- Is specific to your workplace,
- identifies all areas and job tasks with potential exposures to COVID-19, and
- includes control measures to eliminate or reduce such exposures.
Talk with your employees about planned changes and seek their input. Additionally, collaborate with employees and unions to effectively communicate important COVID-19 information.
See the OSHA COVID-19 guidance for more information on how to protect workers from potential exposures, according to their exposure risk. Plans should consider that employees may be able to spread COVID-19 even if they do not show symptoms.
All employers need to consider how best to decrease the spread of COVID-19 and lower the impact in your workplace. This should include activities to:
- prevent and reduce transmission among employees,
- maintain healthy business operations, and
- maintain a healthy work environment.
Workplace safety is everyone’s responsibility. Employers have an ethical and moral responsibility to provide a safe work environment. With the Safer At Work Programs employers should commit the financial support, management oversight, tools and safe environments workers need to do their jobs safely. Both management and workers need to do their part to make safety a personal priority.
ProTech Biohazard Remediation is committed to working with employers to develop and implement safety plans and provide sanitation or decontamination services on a known exposure event and as part of employers ongoing maintenance plans.
CDC is the nation’s health protection agency, working 24/7 to protect America from health and safety threats, both foreign and domestic. CDC increases the health security of our nation.
Content source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention