With the pandemic at play, it can seem like a daunting experience to try and reopen your offices safely. It is certainly possible to avoid Covid at the office by implementing a few minor adjustments. Ensuring that your business takes several different strategies to minimize exposure will help prevent any further outbreak and have your employees feeling secure. While COVID has always caused concerns about health and safety, with the new Delta Variant, it’s critical to keep your employees both educated and protected.
How to Reopen Your Workplace Safely
There are many steps you should take before considering opening your offices. Some of these revolve around work culture and the ability to adapt, while others may be focused on more clinical care, such as home visits. Each company should appropriately change their policies based on what they feel is the most valued while prioritizing employee safety.
Before You Reopen, Conduct a Risk Assessment
Risk assessments are great tools and are more relevant now than ever. A risk assessment looks holistically at all of the factors that could potentially be dangerous for a workplace. For example,OSHA(Occupational Safety and Health Administration) has a hazard recognition reference chart available with exposure ratings that can help you determine risks. It’s also critical that your business looks at the proximity and location of where their staff typically are. For instance, in high-rise buildings, many people are entering/exiting the elevators and buildings. Identifying the initial risks are pertinent in addressing how to minimize exposure.
Creating a Workplace Health and Safety Plan
After conducting a risk assessment, it’s important to look at what actions need to be taken. For example, zoom meetings are a great alternative to building meetings. Begin by analyzing your risk assessment and identifying immediate issues. Ensure that you create a resource guide for your employees should they feel ill and proper steps to take should someone find themselves exposed. Make sure your guidelines are clear, direct, and easy to follow. They should be posted or sent out regularly to reinforce their importance.
Rearranging Your Office Space to Facilitate Social Distancing
Social distancing is one strategy that we have been encouraged to use consistently. The use of the distance between individuals minimizes the risk of exposure to those who may have COVID-19, especially since not all individuals exhibit symptoms. If your company has close cubicles, space them out to ensure they have the proper distance between them. Some companies have worked around this by closing every other cubicle or by only allowing a certain number of employees into the building at a time. If possible, remote work is an excellent option.
The Importance of PPE
Personal Protective Equipment, or PPE, dramatically assists in decreasing the risk of contracting the virus. Consider requiring or providing PPE to your employees if they are to enter the building. Examples of PPE are masks, hand sanitizers, gloves, and gowns. Many companies will provide these to their employees at the entrance in small kits and require them to be worn at all times. Additionally, make sure your employees are educated on their proper use.
Business Reopening Resources & Guidance
Should you choose to open your building back up, ensure that you have looked at all risks that employees will be susceptible to. Provide them with resources on how to properly use their protective equipment, safe distancing strategies, information about vaccinations or testing, and what to do when they feel ill. Ensure that your business has a plan for those who may exhibit symptoms in the building and have stations with plenty of antibacterial soaps.
On-site Covid-19 Tests: How They Work
An excellent option to provide to your employees are on-site COVID tests. Not only is this an excellent preventative measure, but it also allows testing to be more manageable for those who may have families or issues getting testing outside of business hours or at other local sites. You can select the type of test you prefer and schedule an appointment for a convenient time and location. Results are often quick and the process completed by a healthcare professional.
Types of Rapid Tests Offered
Currently, there are many different types of COVID-19 tests available. It’s important for your employees to be educated on the differences and accuracy of each. Rapid testing is completed within 15 minutes to two hours, depending on which test you receive. There are antigen tests, which determine current infection via viral proteins, and the rapid PCR test. The PCR test results are provided in one to two hours but are vastly more effective at detecting the virus. Rapid antibody tests detect if you have already had the virus.
On-site Tests Vs. DIY Kits
DIY kits are now available at most drugstores for purchase. While these are a handy way to get tested, they are often inaccurate. With new variants, DIY tests may become less and less reliable. Many of them are done via nasal swab, and if not performed accurately, they will not give complete results.DIY kits do serve as an immediate last resort.
While returning to work can be a scary thought in these times, it’s critical that, as an employer, you look at all of your options. Ensure you have open communication with your staff and provide them with tools or resources to support them. Frequently touch base with your leadership team to update regulations, policies, and procedures often. Adaptation is key to a successful business, as well as its success during a pandemic.
Contact Drip Hydration Today
On-site tests are a great option for those with families or staff members who want to avoid Covid at the office. Drip Hydration offers on-site corporate testing with discounts available. Simply call us and schedule a time for one of our clinicians to come and complete the testing. HUNDREDS of tests per day can be completed with on-site testing, and many different test options are available.
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Onsite Covid Testing For Businesses With Drip Hydration
Onsite testing, where a testing service comes to your place of work, is an expedient option for businesses and employees. Drip Hydration can bring fast and convenient tests to your business, helping you keep your employees safe and Covid out of your workplace.
We look forward to helping keep you and your staff safe. Give us a call or click the button below for a custom consultation today.