Video shows how to protect yourself from coronavirus transmissions in the workplace

PHOTO: Pixabay

As the saying goes, "prevention is better than cure".

When Singapore went on Orange alert, offices started to implement online communication and work from home contingency plans to try to prevent cluster spreading of the Covid-19.

Should your job requires you to still be present in the office, keep calm.

China Daily recently released a clip on 'Tips on novel coronavirus prevention in the workplace', which lists comprehensive precautionary measures to keep yourself safe and the office coronavirus-free.

It also dishes tips on what to do when commuting to and from work during this virus outbreak.

TRAVELLING TO WORK

Experts have said that transmission can happen via direct droplets and contact transmission when you touch droplets that have landed on surfaces.

While the risk of infection is very low, you can protect yourself by avoiding crowded areas, and one such place is on public transport. 

If your workplace is near your home, you might want to consider walking or cycling to work. Not only are you out in a ventilated area, but you are also clocking in your daily step count and boosting your immunity with the exercise.

PHOTO: ChinaDaily Screengrab  

In instances where you have to take public transport, which is the norm for average Singaporeans like me, the video suggests keeping one to two metres apart from other passengers when possible.

IN THE OFFICE

In an interview with The Straits Times, Professor Wang Lin Fa, the director of the emerging infectious disease programme at Singapore's Duke-NUS Medical School said: "If you really have to go out, the lifts and the public toilets, these are the places where I would be very, very careful about touching any surfaces to not risk a coronavirus infection," 

While you shouldn't worry much about getting infected from breathing in air, it's touching the buttons of the lift that you should be more wary about, which may have droplets on it. 

Opt for the stairs, or if you have to take the lift, make sure you wear a mask and avoid touching the surfaces of the lift. 

PHOTO: ChinaDaily Screengrab  

If you want to be extra careful, Prof Wang learnt a handy tip from social media where you use a pen with a cap sans the ink cartridge to press the buttons. Once you've pressed the buttons, cover the pen again.

Once you're in the office, the China Daily video advises workers to wear a mask at all times and disinfect public areas and items daily. 

Another way to reduce the risk of transmission is through ventilating the office by opening the windows or switching the aircon to 'fresh air' mode if it's available.

To avoid personal contact, take your meetings online and hold video conferences instead.

LUNCHTIME & AFTER WORK PLANS

If you're thinking of escaping the lunchtime crowd, plan your mealtime way before or after the peak hour, and make use of food delivery services too.

PHOTO: ChinaDaily Screengrab  

Another option is to take away your lunch and maybe while you're at it, plan some dine-in activities like catching a movie while eating in the office to bond with your colleagues. 

The video also suggests limiting after-work activities and to avoid encloses spaces such as cinemas, karaoke bars or malls.

Granted, the situation is more serious in China than it is in Singapore, so some of the above measures (social distancing, for example) may seem excessive.

And though it may seem like a lot of work, practising due diligence should pay off in controlling the spread of the virus. What do you think of these prevention tips at the workplace?

Watch the full video below:

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For the latest updates on the coronavirus, visit here.

melissagoh@asiaone.com