As businesses are now starting to reopen the need for the control of coronavirus controls is now paramount.
There are 8 simple steps to controlling the hazard from coronavirus and minimising the risk to your employees, visitors or guests, whether they are in a school, office, restaurant or factory.
All organisations are required to complete a site-specific risk assessment on the practical controls in place to reduce the risk from COVID. This COVID-19 assessment must be made available to all team members as required.
The advice on social distancing measures applies to everyone. You need to minimise opportunities for the virus to spread by maintaining a distance of at least 2-metres or if that is not practicable then 1-metre plus with mitigation.
If close working mitigation will be required then physical barriers, masks, side to side working or back-to-back working is an option
- Staff are advised to wash their hands on arrival to the premises, after toilet breaks, after returning from breaks outside.
- Staff must observe strict personal hygiene practice, wash hands frequently with soap and warm water (for 30 seconds and more frequently than normal) and sanitise them with an alcohol-based hand rub.
- If staff have to change in a changing room this should be separately or in suitable numbers depending on the space.
- It is advised that physical contact is minimised, limit handshakes, high fives, fist bumps etc.
Cleaning and Disinfection
It is advised that the standards of cleaning are reviewed and frequency of this is enhanced to ensure high risk touch points are cleaned often.
A face covering can be very simple and may be worn in enclosed spaces where social distancing isn’t possible. It just needs to cover your mouth and nose. It is not the same as a face mask, such as the surgical masks or respirators used by health and care workers. Similarly, face coverings are not the same as the PPE used to manage risks like dust and spray in an industrial context. Supplies of PPE, including face masks, must continue to be reserved for those who need them to protect against risks in their workplace, such as health and care workers, and those in industrial settings like those exposed to dust hazards.
In some premises these masks are a legal requirement, supermarkets, shops and restaurants.
Track and Trace requirements
Some businesses, i.e., pubs and restaurants will have to record the track and trace data.
- Display the official NHS QR code poster in an accessible place.
- Ask every customer or visitor aged 16 and over to check in to your venue or provide their contact details. This can be done quickly and easily using the NHS COVID-19 app to scan in the NHS QR code poster.
- Have a system in place to ensure that you can collect information from your customers and visitors who do not have an app
- This can be done on the booking system (tock or seven rooms etc.)
- Take reasonable steps to refuse entry to those who refuse to check in or provide contact details.
Outdoor areas at hospitality venues can reopen to serve customers in groups of up to 6 individual people or a maximum of 2 households.
Some venues may wish to erect outdoor shelters. To be considered ‘outdoors’, shelters, marquees and other structures can have a roof but need to have at least 50% of the area of their walls open at all times whilst in use (as per smoking guidance).
At any premises serving alcohol, customers will be required to order, be served and eat/drink while seated (even if no alcohol is ordered). If a hospitality venue does not serve alcohol, then customers will be able to order and collect food and drink from a counter but must consume food and drink while seated at a table.
Businesses should not intentionally facilitate gatherings between a greater number of people than is permitted; and should take steps to ensure customer compliance with the rules on social contact. Under these rules, outdoor gatherings are limited to 6 people or 2 households (a support bubble counts as a single household).
Working safely during coronavirus
The government has produce a series of working guides for business that are open.
The COVID roadmap
Ordering lateral flow tests
The government has now made free Lateral Flow Tests available to the wider public