Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), has the attention of the whole world, and the situation has rapidly escalated in the last few weeks. As Australia implements a range of measures to counter the pandemic, you may be wondering what it means for your business. Is it safe to see customers? What can I do to protect myself or my team?
Below we offer tips and info to keep yourself, your team, and your customers safe.
Symptoms and key info on COVID-19
Coronaviruses are a group of viruses that can make humans and animals sick – it can range from mild symptoms, such as a cold, to more severe diseases such as pneumonia. It’s important to know that while some people will recover quickly, others may get very sick. You should be careful and pay attention if you experience:
- Fever and fatigue
- Flu-like symptoms (eg. coughing, muscle aches)
- Sore throat
- Shortness of breath
Symptoms typically first appear in the first 5 to 6 days, although this may range from 2 to 14 days. For this reason, if you think you’ve been in contact with a confirmed case, you should consider self-isolation for 14 days.
How does it spread?
It is passed on from someone with Coronavirus to other close contacts via tiny droplets, by coughing or sneezing, or by contact with contaminated hands, surfaces or objects.
Can it live on surfaces?
Yes, according to the World Health Organisation(WHO, 2020), it can survive for hours or days depending on the surface. It may vary under different conditions (e.g. temperature, humidity, and type of surfaces such as metal, ceramics, and plastics).
Viruses are not actually living organisms; and need a host in order to survive. If you think a surface might be infected, keep it clean with household disinfectants.
Tips on staying safe
More and more Australian businesses are implementing measures to counter the pandemic. For example, a growing number of businesses are asking staff members to work from home.
But we understand that might not be practical for many Brighte vendors, so we’ve gathered a few tips on staying safe on site:
- Prepare effectively for site visits
We’ve compiled a checklist & infographic to help with this. We recommend checking in with customers before visits, keeping a 1.5 metre distance where possible, and carrying alcohol-based hand sanitiser, and anti-bacterial wipes.
- Wash your hands regularly
Clean your hands regularly and thoroughly (for 20 seconds)
If you can’t wash your hands easily, consider using hand sanitisers, they may be effective in killing any potential viruses on your hands. Then, when you are able, wash your hands thoroughly.
- Use your inner elbow or a clean tissue
Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
- Avoid close contact with others
When someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth. These droplets don’t stay suspended in the air, but descend quickly (to the ground) – so it’s very important to stay at least 1 metre from infected people.
- Clean “high touch” surfaces
Things like doorknobs, tables, phones / iPads, or elevator buttons can be terrible infection points. Clean it with a common household disinfectant to kill the virus and protect yourself and others.
- Stay informed
Ensure you stay up to date on the latest advice from the Australian Department of Health, Local State & Territory Departments and World Health Organization as this may impact your ability to work on site. For example, if certain areas are in lockdown.
- Keep your customers in the know
As a growing number of your customer base may be working from home, you will likely be in more contact with them. You can share the above information and also our consumer installation checklist with them, to ensure you’re both working together to remain safe.
Most importantly, if you become unwell and think you may have symptoms of Coronavirus, please seek medical attention.
- Call ahead of time to book an appointment. Tell your doctor about your symptoms, travel history and any recent close contact with someone who has Coronavirus.
- If you must leave home to see your doctor, wear a surgical mask (if you have one) to protect others.
Coronavirus is causing a severe global economic downturn. If you are a Brighte customer, or know of any Brighte customers who may be affected, please let us know. We are here to help who is in need of financial relief.
Please contact us at 1300-BRIGHTE or see our hardship policy.
We are in a very serious situation, but if we follow the advice and instructions from health authorities, we can all do our part.
For more information, please refer to our government bodies and official updates on COVID-19.
Disclaimer This article provides a general overview and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your family doctor or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding this medical condition.
Who.int. 2020. Q&A On Coronaviruses (COVID-19). [online] Available at: https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses [Accessed 18 March 2020].
Australian Government Department of Health. 2020. What You Need To Know About Coronavirus (COVID-19). [online] Available at: <https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/what-you-need-to-know-about-coronavirus-covid-19#protect-yourself-and-others> [Accessed 18 March 2020]
Who.int. 2020. Advice For Public. [online] Available at: <https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public> [Accessed 18 March 2020].
Health.nsw.gov.au. 2020. COVID-19 – Frequently Asked Questions – Alerts. [online] Available at: <https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/alerts/Pages/coronavirus-faqs.aspx> [Accessed 18 March 2020].
BBC News. 2020. Coronavirus Information: What Should I Do?. [online] Available at: <https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51711227> [Accessed 18 March 2020].
Blog Coronavirus: What do I need to be aware of?. 2020. Blog Coronavirus: What Do I Need To Be Aware Of?. [online] Available at: <https://news.klm.com/blog-coronavirus-what-do-i-need-to-be-aware-of/> [Accessed 18 March 2020].