So many facilities are shared in the workplace, computers, telephones, door handles, buttons on lifts, toilet facilities and desks, that hygiene should probably be a key contender for your daily ‘To do’ list.
Office cleaners should be using appropriate disinfectant products in these areas anyway, but there are a number of things you can do to help minimise the spread of germs and the flu virus in particular.
- Wash your hands frequently and make sure they are dry! – particularly when using communal facilities.
- Always use a new and clean tissue to cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing.
- Put your used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands thoroughly afterwards or use a bacterial cleanser such as Dettol Healthy Touch Antibacterial Handwash.
- Keep a good supply of clean tissues on your desk and offer them to colleagues.
- Speak to your designated health and safety office and offer to help them implement some simple improvements around the office e.g. posters encouraging hand washing, tissues and the siting of antibacterial hand cleanser at various points in the office.
- Check the temperature! Ensure your office is not overly warm as this can encourage the spread of germs.
- Turn the air conditioning off to help prevent germs from re-circulating and open the window to let fresh air in.
- Make disinfectant wipes available to all employees and instigate a weekly office tidy up.
- Ask your boss to talk to the cleaners about specific requirements e.g. regular disinfecting of work surfaces, door handles and staff bathrooms.
- Speak to your HR director to ensure there is a clear policy encouraging staff to stay at home if they are unwell.
- Reduce the stress! Stress can make us more susceptible to infection so make sure you take regular breaks during the day and take time out to relax after work.
- Try not to eat lunch at your desk.
- Ensure all cutlery, crockery and glass wear is properly cleaned before use.
If you require further information specifically for your work place, the NHS has issued guidance please click here for more information.