By Douglas P. Skinner, MPA, NRP, NCEE
FLU and Coronavirus Season In Full Swing
FLU and Coronavirus – Hey, all you employers in the Healthcare Field, Emergency Medical Services, Fire Rescue, Construction Industry, General Industry, did you know that the Flu season is in high gear and now we have a new virus out there called the Coronavirus Disease or COVID-19. Don’t Panic!!! So far, the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is not as bad as the FLU. The CDC shows that the majority of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is in China, and health officials are working to keep it to a minimal involvement in the USA. But we all need to take precautions to make sure we can handle the diseases that get released into our society. Are you ready??
The big thing for all is to be prepared and educate your staff on how to prevent and deal with FLU and Coronavirus (Covid-19) and other Airborne Diseases. The primary way to prepare is to educate your staff on how the diseases are spread, what symptoms come with each disease, how to prevent and treat the diseases, and what are the path forward for each disease processes. The secondary path is to assure that you have specific policies, equipment and training for your personnel to assure their safety on the worksite.
Educate Yourself and Your Staff
Education about the FLU and Coronavirus (Covid-19) is important, for your staff need to know how to prevent contracting these diseases. The CDC (www.cdc.gov) and various other groups provide good resources on there websites to help employers to achieve some educational needs, but a well prepared, customized education and training program specific for your company’s needs maybe the way forward to help your group or company.
Proper Equipment and Programs
The third way forward is to have the proper equipment and engineering programs to stop the disease before it touches the staff members. Having a program of vaccines for the flu and when it comes out the COVID-19 is a key, for virus containment. Providing vaccine programs is a great benefit for your employees and your busy. Another part of the process is to have the equipment needed to prevent exposures. This equipment needs to be specific to the exposure.
In this case the FLU and Coronavirus (COVID-19) are airborne. So, we will need gloves, gowns, eye shields and respiratory protection, such as N95 Respirators or PAPPR’s. Along with this you will need Respiratory Protection plan or programs to comply with OSHA Regulations under CFR 1910, to include the bloodborne pathogens programs to cover any other issues with exposure compliance. Additionally, you will need to assure that when you have the Respiratory Program and require personnel to wear respirators, you will need to provide Fit Testing to assure that the personnel can effectively protect themselves while wearing a respirator.
Do You Still Need Help?
Now that I said all of this, are you ready? Are you prepared?
If not, or you don’t know and you need help, don’t hesitate, call the professionals in OSHA and Regulatory Compliance – SCS Safety Health and Security Associates LLC at (703)-779-7330 or our website at email at [email protected]. SCS can provide evaluations of existing programs and provide what is needed to update or prepare your group for hazards currently active and futuristic threats. SCS also, can provide new programs, plans, equipment, training and fit testing for your respiratory protection needs. Don’t be caught in an emergency and not be prepared, call today and we can help you achieve compliance.