Please Note: This post about coronavirus was published about one month ago. Since then, there have been dramatic changes in how widespread the disease has become. However, the basic information about the disease, now known as COVID-19, is still pertinent today for all facility managers to know.
While the people affected by the coronaviruses outbreak are thousands of miles away, it is spreading fast. As of the end of January, there have been 6,000 confirmed cases reported in China and 132 deaths.
One case has been reported in the Chicago area as of this writing, and at least nine people in the city are being observed for signs of the virus. Nationwide, the Chicago Tribune reports, that “more than 2,000 people [in the U.S.] had been screened for the virus and 63 patients in 22 states were being investigated because of possible signs of the virus.”*
This means building managers should take steps now to help protect the health of their tenants. The best way to do this is with information. Among the things we all should know about Coronavirus are the following:
What Coronavirus is
The virus is associated with the common cold, pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). According to the World Health Organization, what is spreading in China and other parts of the world is a “novel” strain of the virus that attacks humans. Historically, the virus was transmitted among animals.
The most common symptoms
Most victims of the virus experience flu-like symptoms, but these can vary as to severity. Fever, cough, shortness of breath, breathing problems, and fatigue are typical symptoms.
Those most vulnerable
Like most viruses, the most vulnerable people tend to be older or are children. However, we have witnessed many people attacked by the virus that do not fall into these two categories.
How Coronavirus is spread
Coronavirus is an airborne virus. When someone coughs or sneezes, droplets are spread to other people and on to nearby surfaces. When on surfaces, it can live as long as six days. Additionally, the virus can be spread by touching or shaking hands with someone that has the virus and has not washed their hands properly.
If someone has the virus
They must stay home. Avoid close contact with others.
Now that we know a bit more about the disease, what can facility managers do to help protect their tenants? Among the things are the following:
Pass information such as this on to tenants. Knowledge is power when it comes to fighting a fast-spreading disease.
Place handwashing posters in all restrooms. We mentioned Coronavirus is spread by droplets in the air and does get on hands. Regular and effective handwashing will help prevent it from spreading.
Because it can live up to six days on surfaces, all “high touch” surfaces must be properly cleaned and sanitized every day. The word “properly” is highlighted because this generally means that surfaces must be cleaned first and then disinfected. Cleaning removes soils; disinfecting kills almost all pathogens on surfaces.
If there has been an outbreak of Coronavirus in your facility or there is serious concern, further action is needed. Secure Clean has an infection control system that includes the EvaClean touch-free cleaning system. This is a spray disinfecting and sanitizing system that will kill the virus on surfaces. The company has already announced:
“We’ve been fielding tons of calls regarding Coronavirus. Yes, EvaClean is effective against this virus.”
Finally, even if we are not your cleaning contractor, we are here to help. Contact us, and we will send in our team of experts to advise you and your custodial crew on what steps to take to help ensure your facility and your tenants are protected.
Information about coronavirus from the CDC can be found here.
The Secure Clean blog is designed to help building managers keep their facilities cleaner, healthier, greener, and safer, in the most cost-effective ways possible. To learn more about us, please take a few minutes to explore our website at www.securecleanbsi.com, contact us here, or at 888-609-1410.