5 elements to consider before you prepare for a pandemic
1: Monitor Travel
- Make sure you know who has been recently travelling in infected areas.
- Consider asking them to voluntarily quarantine themselves if they have visited infected areas.
- Consider limiting travel to those areas.
2: Monitor Sickness
We understand that the current virus presents itself with similar symptoms to common cold or flu.
- Ensure that your people will let you know if they don’t feel well.
- Monitoring all illness, however trivial, is essential at this point.
- Make sure to maintain communication with employees off work due to sickness.
3: Communicate and Educate
- Make sure you communicate to your people any escalation in World Health Organisation threat levels or your regional health authority advice.
- Let your employees know what you are doing and why you are doing it – they are more likely to buy-in to your measures.
- Consider issuing a factsheet covering common questions they might ask you.
4: Review your Policies and Procedures
Make sure you know how you are going to deal with people who are affected, either directly or indirectly, if things get worse:
- What is your policy on paying people who don’t feel safe coming into the office?
- What if they are unable to work because they can’t get their usual childcare cover?
- What is your process for repatriating people from overseas in case of an emergency?
5: Prepare to Escalate
If infection is confirmed in your country / region then you should be prepared for your next steps. These steps might include:
- Increasing the frequency of cleaning the building
- Putting up hygiene reminder posters
- Reviewing your teleworking policy
- Asking people to voluntarily quarantine themselves at home if they are unwell
- Restricting face-to-face meetings
- Preventing ‘hot-desking’ or phone sharing
- Providing hand gel and other kits
- Ensuring that your key suppliers will to be able to continue to support you, or that you have alternative plans in hand.
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