With the lifting of most restrictions now, it would be easy to start to think the threat of Covid-19 has disappeared.
It has not.
And with more and more cases being identified, it is vital that club owners continue to protect their staff to their full capability. Club owners need a rigorous COVID-19 risk management portfolio.
As an employer at a club, you must protect people from the risks associated with Covid-19. Below we offer guidance as to how best to support those who may be suffering from long-COVID.
The first and foremost part of protecting your workers is to conduct a suitable and sufficient risk assessment to identify and control the risks associated with Covid-19.
As part of your COVID-19 risk assessment, you must:
- Identify work activities which may increase the risk of transmission of COVID-19.
- Identify who is at risk of being exposed, this could be employees, visitors, contractors or members of the public, for example.
- Evaluate the likelihood of exposure.
- Put in place suitable control measures to reduce the risk.
It is important to remember that the risk has not gone away and the HSE will still be conducting spot checks of clubs to ensure they are managing the risks as best they can. Not all clubs are the same of course, when it comes to numbers of employees on site and potential footfall of customers, crowded indoor areas or predominantly outdoor working, there will be many club specific considerations to be taken into account.
3 key areas where control measures will assist you are:
- Adequate ventilation – a good source of ventilation throughout the workplace should help to reduce transmission of aerosols which could carry Covid-19 particles. Ventilation can be achieved either naturally, by opening windows and doors or mechanically, using ducting and fans to bring in fresh air from outside. Make sure that any mechanically operated ventilation systems have been serviced, inspected and are in full working order.
- Sufficient cleaning – making sure all areas of the workplace are kept clean and sanitised, with a rigid cleaning regime. You should continue to ensure that access to handwashing facilities remains a priority, with employees being encouraged to continue to wash hands frequently. Areas which are likely to be touched by numerous people such as door handles, taps etc should be identified, cleaned and sanitised on a more frequent basis. You could have in place a procedure where all desks and personal spaces are cleaned and sanitised at the end of each day.
- Hand washing and the use of hand sanitiser – you should continue to display educational posters emphasising the importance of hand washing. All workplaces should have hot and cold running water and a plentiful supply of hand soap. There needs to be a suitable method of drying hands, such as paper towels or hand driers.
It is important that you continue to provide hand sanitiser in washrooms and at identified stations throughout the workplace. You may wish to provide this for those employees and visitors, such as delivery drivers, where there is nowhere for them to wash their hands.
Whatever control measures you decide on, it is vital that you include your workforce in any discussions so they can have buy-in to the controls in place, and will also make them feel part of the risk assessment process overall.
Other measures you may wish to use to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the workplace are:
- The use of face coverings in crowded or poorly ventilated indoor areas.
- Workplace testing, which could involve requesting employees to undertake a lateral flow test twice per week.
- Carry on with the ethos of ‘Hands, Face & Space’ wherever possible within your workplace.
Whatever control measures are identified from your risk assessment, it is important that all staff are aware of them. Our updated Coronavirus (COVID-19) – General, lack of awareness, catching and spreading Risk Assessment template is attached.
The rules on self-isolation have changed and it is vital that you know what to do and when:
When to self-isolate
You must self-isolate:
- If you have symptoms or test positive
- If you are told to self-isolate by NHS test and trace
- If someone within your household or with whom you have been in close contact has tested positive for COVID-19
You will not need to self-isolate if you live in the same household as someone with Covid-19, or are a close contact of
someone with Covid-19, and any of the following apply:
- You’re fully vaccinated
- You’re below the age of 18 years and 6 months
- You’ve taken part in or are currently part of an approved Covid-19 vaccine trial
- You’re not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons
If you do develop symptoms then you will need to have take a PCR test.
For full assistance on COVID-19 related issues or insurance based consultation for your club, contact us at Club Insure. Call 0344 488 9204 or enquire with us below.