After the state of alarm and the arrival of the “new normal” in our lives, society gradually returns to its habits while adapting to the new ones. For example, those who have been in ERTE or working from home gradually return to their jobs and offices, being essential to follow the appropriate occupational health and safety measures to avoid outbreaks.
What are the health and safety measures at work in the new situation? In this article, we will look at some fundamental questions for a secure office.
Who can go to the workplace and how?
Almost all of the jobs return to their natural state with the arrival of the new normal, so it is now possible to go to the offices to fill the positions. However, a series of prevention measures must be followed to avoid workplace risks in offices against the virus.
RECOMMENDATIONS TO PREVENT RISK IN OFFICES
To prevent risks in offices and work centers, the Ministry of Health has launched a guide of guidelines to indicate guidelines to follow before, during, and after fulfilling the working day in offices. Some of the highlights are:
- Promote teleworking. Without any doubt, it is the safest option because the contact is minimal if not zero. It is recommended that you should work from home whenever possible and that contact hours are limited to the minimum.
- Organizational measures. Work schedules have to be organized so that as few as possible coincide in the same place. This will be done according to the staff and the facilities’ size to guarantee social distancing. It is advisable to have a contingency plan among the occupational risk prevention measures in the offices.
- Displacements. The recommendation is to go to work in private environments to avoid the accumulation of people. If public transport is used, the measures must be extreme, such as maintaining a safe distance and always wearing a hygienic mask.
- Suppliers, clients, and others. The distancing standards apply to everyone, including suppliers and customers who pass through the office. As far as possible, face-to-face meetings and visits will be avoided, opting for videoconference meetings whenever possible.
- Sanitary control. If any employee has symptoms associated with the virus, they must notify and stay home. Some companies can decide measures such as taking the temperature of the workforce, although that is left up to each company.
What are the safety and occupational risk prevention measures in the office due to COVID-19?
Once in place, there are also some specific prevention measures to avoid risks from COVID-19. Some of them were already requested during the state of alarm, and others have been implemented in the “new normal.”
- Hygienic measures. From the beginning, it has been asked that the spaces be ventilated frequently and that specific sanitary measures be taken, such as cleaning hands often, disinfecting surfaces, and all common areas.
- Social distance is another health and safety measure at work. The posts should be separated to maintain between 1.5 and 2 meters of separation between people.
- The common spaces will be used with caution, reducing the number of employees that can be simultaneous to the conditions of the previous point.
- EPIS. Gloves, masks, and other protective items will be used whenever the safety distance cannot be maintained.
- Sensitization. As the “new normal” takes hold, alertness may be lowered. To avoid risks, it is essential to communicate and information that reminds employees of the need to continue applying measures to reduce occupational risks in offices due to COVID-19.
Once the state of alarm and containment measures for the coronavirus has ended, we must remain on guard to minimize the risks that still exist. Safety and occupational risk prevention measures in the office have to become a habit. Only in this way we can defeat the pandemic and not experience a situation like the one we have been through again.