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How to reduce the spread of bacteria in your workplace

Created on: 11th March 2020

As the world is focused on the latest news about the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) It may be time to look at how you can create a more hygienic office environment.

Businesses are being urged to stay up-to-date daily and follow the official guidance from Public Health England, Foreign & Commonwealth Office travel advice, ACAS, and National Health Service.

We have all heard of the standard procedures that everyone can do, including using a tissue to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. If a tissue is unavailable, it has been suggested to cough into your sleeve on the crook of your elbow to reduce the risk of transferring germs to work surfaces. This is in addition to washing your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds.

But there are ways you can make your office a more hygienic place to work and help reduce the risk of spreading germs in general, not just for coronavirus but in all cases.  

Create a clean working environment

A happy worker is a productive worker and is always inspired to do their jobs to the best of their ability. So, as an employer, help them achieve this by making sure staff have access to tissues and hand sanitiser and are encouraged to use it.

Whether you provide individual bottles across the workplace or have refillable wall-mounted options, it will help people feel cleaner and more able to remain hygienic rather than having to disappear off to the toilets every time they cough.

Maybe a little bit of an office redesign might help. Consider creating a little more space between individual workspaces to allow for a 2-metre gap between each staff member. By providing adequate desks and workspace, it can help to reduce the spread of bacteria and viruses from person to person.

Incorporate a self-cleaning environment

Concerned about who may have touched the door handle before you and what germs they may have left behind? Why not install self-sanitising door handles? Yes, they really do exist.

A glass tube with aluminium caps at each end, covered in a photocatalytic coating made from titanium dioxide uses UV light to create a chemical reaction that decomposes bacteria. This beautiful accessory will provide that little bit of extra hygiene in your office.

A clear desk policy reduces bacteria

Did you know that a 2018 study showed the average desk contains 400 times more germs than a toilet seat?! They average 20,961 germs per square inch in addition to the 3295 on the keyboard and 1676 on a mouse. Meanwhile, your desk phone harbours a staggering 25,127.

If your workplace doesn’t already have one, a clean desk policy can help reduce the spread of germs by allowing cleaning staff to do a more thorough clean with antibacterial sprays or wipes.

Create hygienic office toilet facilities

When looking at your business’ toilet facilities, consider how easy it is to clean, can you reduce the number of surfaces the user has to touch by using sensor technology for flushes, taps and hand dryers?

Can you incorporate automatic (PIR) lights to turn on automatically when it senses movement? Is the door easy to open with freshly washed hands?

These are long term fixes, not just to help reduce the spread of coronavirus, but also to reduce the spread of the common cold and other viruses that are known to make their way around the workplace.

If you would like more information on how to change your office to become more effective in reducing the spread of bacteria, get in touch and speak to one of the team today. We can help design new toilet facilities and office layouts that incorporate your requirements for a cleaner environment.

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Tel: 01522 688771

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