On April 14, 2020, PHASE Associates conducted a FREE Learning Webinar on Disinfecting the Workplace for COVID-19 – A Novel Challenge for A&M Industrial’s A&M University.
For more information or questions regarding Coronavirus, call us at (973) 597-0750 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following protocol has been
developed as a guideline to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace.
These protocols are subject to change and may be updated at any time.
- Instruct employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially.
- Provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (i.e. doorknobs, keyboards, desks) can be wiped down by employees before each use.
- Limit hand to face contact. Cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue into the trash and wash hands frequently.
- Use PPE (disposable gloves and N-95 respirator) to prevent direct contact with chemicals and potential bodily fluids. Employees should wash hands with soap and water prior to donning PPE.
- Don eye protection (i.e. safety glasses and face shield), if splashing is expected, prior to entering any contaminated areas.
- Use gowns, leg covers, or shoe covers as needed.
- Immediately clean surfaces and objects that are visibly soiled. Additionally, clean all frequently touched non-porous surfaces in the workplace, such as workstations, countertops, and doorknobs. Cleaning should occur 1-3 times per day.
- Currently there are no FIFRA/EPA approved cleaning agents for COVID-19. Wash surfaces with a general household cleaner. Rinse with water and then apply disinfecting agent. Use agents that are either ethanol, accelerated hydrogen peroxide, or bleach-based and follow the directions on the product label. Do not mix cleaners and disinfectants unless the labels indicate it is safe to do so. Used wipes must be discarded, do not re-use or double dip.
- The recommended length of time for the disinfectant used should be 5 minutes before drying (allow to air dry if possible).
- According to the CDC, diluted household bleach solutions can be used if appropriate for the surface. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation. Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
- Prepare a bleach solution by mixing:
- 5 tablespoons (⅓ cup) bleach per gallon of water or
- 4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water
- A list of products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims, maintained by the American Chemistry Council Center for Biocide Chemistries (CBC), is available at: https://bit.ly/3aySFjN. Products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims are expected to be effective against COVID-19 based on data for harder to kill viruses.
- Carefully remove contaminated porous materials, where possible, such as upholstery, rugs, and carpeting. Launder in accordance with the product instructions or dispose (material should be sealed in plastic and labeled as a biohazard during disposal).
- Change PPE frequently, especially if damaged during cleaning and disinfection.
- Once cleaning and disposal is completed, employees should remove and discard PPE. Used PPE should be disposed of in plastic bags, tied up, and labeled as a biohazard. Employees should wash hands with soap and water prior to leaving the cleaning areas.