Staying safe and keeping things clean during the pandemic

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Health Assured team

11 January 2021

While compared to the early part of the COVID-19 pandemic—all the way back in March 2020—we know a lot more about controlling the spread of coronavirus, we’re by no means out of the woods at time of writing.

In fact, as of January 2021, stringent lockdown rules have been set in place. And it’s possible that they’ll be in place for quite a while.

It‘s tempting to think a little pessimism is the order of the day. That there’s little you can do either as an individual, or a business owner, to help keep COVID under control—after all, the daily numbers are high.

But there are ways we can all act, and things we can all do, which will help get those numbers down. Reduce the infections. And, eventually, return to normal.

Mask up

This is a pretty simple one. COVID can be spread via droplets of exhaled air and water—a barrier in front of your mouth will attenuate that spread. This is known as MNC (Mouth and Nose Covering).

Stay indoors wherever possible

This one is less simple.

COVID spreads most easily from personal contact. It’s why we have distancing rules in place—these rules will never eliminate 100% of viral transmission, but they can drastically reduce it.

It follows that packed and busy places with higher footfall and crowds are more likely to spread the virus.

If you can work from home, do1. If you can order your groceries and essentials online, do (with the caveat that some, more vulnerable people may need the delivery time slots more than you do—use your judgment.)

Some social media apps like Nextdoor are really coming into their own, here. Some neighbourhoods are organising rotas for shopping, meaning one household will go out to buy essentials for several people on their street—mostly the vulnerable and shielding—clean and disinfect the purchases and deliver them afterward.

Disinfect and deep clean

And this one? This one is vital.

Disease and disorder almost inevitably follow uncleanliness. It has always been important to keep your environment to a certain level of order—it’s better for your mental and physical health. But simply doing the washing-up on time and scrubbing the fridge once a month isn’t enough, during a pandemic. We need to clean deeper.

Distilled white vinegar and clean cloths are perfect for an initial cleaning of surfaces. To disinfect, after you’ve cleaned, go back with an alcohol-based disinfectant, or a rubbing alcohol of at least 70% strength. Failing that, household bleach diluted with cold water will work, but bear in mind that great care needs to be taken when working with bleach. Keep your space ventilated, and wear good rubber gloves.

For businesses, it’s a little deeper still. Fortunately, there are plenty of cleaning firms offering deep cleans on daily, weekly and monthly schedules. Look for cleaning services compliant with the standards on chemical disinfectant—they’ll prominently display these credentials if they have them.

1 https://www.gov.uk/guidance/national-lockdown-stay-at-home#going-to-work

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