The Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocol For 2021
What is the Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfectant Protocol?
The enhanced cleaning and disinfection protocol is a proactive measure in a COVID-19 Prevention Plan. The protocol provides additional cleaning and disinfecting processes to minimize exposure to viruses and bacteria.
It adopts training methods to understand and protect us from germs, the difference between disinfecting and sanitizing, and their actual impact on the environment and health.
The Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocol:
STEP 1 - Educate, Understand, Then Protect:
Knowing your enemy is half the battle, and in the fight against COVID-19 the rules are no different. When it comes to the safety and well being of yourself, your family, your peers or employees, education, understanding, and protection are the goals to achieve. Educate yourself on how germs are transmitted, and understand how you can minimize your risk to yourself or others. Once you have the knowledge to fight against germs, such as COVID-19, your battle is nearly complete.
When it comes to protection, ensuring a clean surface and area is the first step to take. If the surface area is not clean, disinfecting methods like using the Graco HP20 Cordless SaniSpray will not work properly as the layer of grime acts as a buffer to the disinfectant. Wear the proper PPE and don't rush the process - proper protection takes effort.
STEP 2 - Practice the Right Frequency:
Practice routine cleaning & disinfection of frequently touched surfaces. Examples of high-touched surfaces are reception areas, lobbies, tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, desks, keyboards, faucets and sinks.
The necessary frequency should be decided on a case-by-case scenario. To find the best frequency of cleaning, consider the presence of high-touch surfaces and the usual traffic those surfaces see. More traffic and more high-touch surfaces mean more frequent cleaning. We've written a handy guide for when to clean, sanitize, or disinfect high-touch surfaces, but a general rule of thumb would be a general deep clean every 1-2 months for high traffic areas, 3-6 months for medium traffic areas, and 6-12 months for low traffic areas.
STEP 3 - Make Sure You Are Using the Right Disinfectant:
Implement your enhanced cleaning and disinfection protocol using EPA and Health Canada rated products, approved for disinfection purposes. Follow the manufacturer's instructions on the label to ensure the safe and effective use of the product. Be careful about how you apply the disinfectant - know the dwell time, surface coverage, and use a method that is designed to handle the oxidizing nature of disinfectant chemicals, like a Graco or Pax electrostatic disinfectant sprayer.
STEP 4 - Clean -> Sanitize -> Then Disinfect:
Understand the difference between cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing. Establish the right cleaning and disinfection methodology. For example, clean all visibly soiled areas first, then apply the proper EPA or Health Canada approved disinfectant. Use the Right-Hand Rule, where you will work to the right and move left towards the exit door. Focus on high-touch surfaces but don't forget the little things like the shower curtain, cupboard handles, toilet cistern, lightswitches, etc.
Ensure dwell times are met and don't forget the PPE!
IMPORTANT -> Provide Appropriate Training:
Establish effective training for cleaning professionals to ensure that they meet all current hygiene and cleanliness practices. Ensure cleaning professionals have personal protective equipment (PPE) and know how to clean or dispose of the PPE.
If staff or yourself will be doing the work, make sure you understand the chemicals you are using and take the necessary precautions. The entire process of cleaning, then sanitizing, then disinfecting can be an incredible amount of work. Many businesses opt for a professional cleaning service to hit all three steps, then purchase something like the Graco HP20 SaniSpray to do the sanitizing and disinfecting from that point on. This method dramatically reduces downtime and allows businesses to invest in their company's future, paying tenfold the cost of a Graco HP20 or Graco HP65.
What is a germ?
The germ is a generic term to describe microorganisms to describe a disease. The four major types of germs are bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa. They can invade plants, animals, and people, but many are treatable with modern medicine.
How Do Germs Get Transmitted?
Germs can spread from one person to another through direct contact when people shake hands, hug, or kiss.
Germs can also spread through indirect contact if people touch something with germs already on it, like a doorknob, and then touch their eyes, nose, or mouth. People can also spread germs by sharing things like cups or pens.
Droplets containing germs are released into the air when a person coughs or sneezes. These tiny droplets can travel as far as 6 feet and can spread germs by landing on surfaces or in another person's eyes, nose, or mouth.
In rare instances, remains of these small droplets can be suspended in the air for hours and may be carried by air currents farther away than larger droplets. Other people can breathe in these droplets.
All germs present in an area can be killed if a proper cleaning and disinfectant protocol is followed.
If At All, Make Remote Working A Possibility
No one can transmit a single germ in the entire office, provided they were never in the office to begin with. As businesses are forced to close and staff start to show symptoms, remote working offers a way for employers to guarantee their workforce through a pandemic.
A recent statistic found that forty-four percent of companies offer a flexible work structure, such as allowing employees to choose when and where they work. As a result, office sharing, desk sharing, and communal dining areas will continue to grow. Remote work is more popular than ever, but some organizations remain skeptical.
Working remotely depends almost entirely on having the right tools for the job. This means having the right collaboration and communication tools: video calls to communicate with colleagues and team members, chat to do the same, an intranet to centralize important updates, and a working video conference room.
Going without any of these basic tech tools can make things a lot more difficult for you and the people you work with, so employers, take note: allowing remote work necessitates giving your people access to the tools that make it possible.
While remote work may not always be feasible, it's the most proactive method, alongside routine disinfecting, to continue to build a successful company during this pandemic, or the next.
Take Home Notes
The Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocol for 2021 isn't really all that different than years before. It has always been essential to clean, sanitize, and disinfect high-touch surfaces, as well as to have plans in place for the carrying out of the process. The importance of hand washing is not a new trend. Complacency over time has been the downfall of many, and that is an age-old trend just the same.
Many had simply forgotten the importance of proper hygiene protocols In 2020, but now the world has been reminded that, without a proper cleaning and disinfecting protocol, we are all at risk. It's important for us all to do our parts and take our cleaning protocols seriously; to develop new protocols that address issues not solved by the last.
Remember the four, basic steps to the Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocol for 2021, and we can have the world back to making new trends in no time.