Incspaces are closely monitoring the situation regarding the COVID19 Coronavirus.
This document has been prepared following advice from a WHO (World Health Organisation) accredited expert and is updated with the Working Safely during coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance.
The policy details the company’s response to government advice whilst subsequently ensuring further spread of the virus is controlled.
There are still many cases of COVID-19 in England and there is a risk you could catch or pass on the virus, even if you are fully vaccinated. You are encouraged to exercise caution and consider the risks.
While no situation is risk free, there are actions we can take to protect ourselves and others around us.
General information relating to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
What is the coronavirus?
A coronavirus is a virus that can be transmitted from person to person. Typical symptoms include fever, headaches, loss of taste / smell, a persistent cough that may progress to a severe pneumonia causing shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.
Generally, a coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease.
COVID-19 is caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which spreads between people, mainly when an infected person is in close contact with another person and spread worldwide. This is a rapidly changing situation which is being monitored carefully.
How is coronavirus spread?
The main way of spreading Covid-19 is through close contact with an infected person. When someone with Covid-19 breathes, speaks, coughs or sneezes, they release particles (droplets and aerosols) containing the virus. These particles can be breathed in by another person.
Surfaces and belongings can also be contaminated with Covid-19 when people who are infected cough or sneeze near the or if they touch them.
How to avoid catching infections like coronavirus
You can reduce your risk of getting and spreading respiratory infections by:
• avoiding direct hand contact with your eyes, nose and mouth
• maintaining good hand hygiene – washing hands with soap and water or alcohol handsanitiser:
• after coughing or sneezing
• after going to the toilet
• before eating and drinking
• avoiding direct contact with people that have a respiratory illness and avoiding using their personal items such as their mobile phone
• covering your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing with disposable tissues and disposing of them in the nearest waste bin after use
Building and workspace guidance
With social distancing restrictions lifted, incspaces controls to reduce the risk of spreading virus through droplets are:
• Encourage lift users to consider others when entering lifts.
• People with disabilities have priority access to lifts.
• Use of screens at reception desks.
• Use back-to-back or side-to-side working (rather than face-to-face) whenever possible.
• Reduce the number of people each person has contact with by using ‘fixed teams or partnering’ (so each person works with only a few others).
• Where it is not possible to move workstations further apart, arranging people to work side by side or facing away from each other rather than face-to-face. Screens are used to separate people from each other.
• Take account of the impact on those with protected characteristics and if any reasonable adjustments are to be made.
• Encourage the use of face coverings in enclosed and crowded spaces, such as meetings.
• incspaces staff PCR test when they have symptoms.
• incspaces staff are provided with RLF tests to target asymptomatic testing to help people manage their personal risk.
Use of Welfare / kitchen/ shower facilities
The following controls have been implemented in all incspaces buildings:
• Hand sanitising stations are visible to use and kept stocked up.
• To minimise the risk of transmission in changing rooms and showers, users are asked to ensure they are clean before and after use with cleaning equipment supplied.
Please be aware of the following controls in place relating to meetings:
• All used meeting rooms are cleaned twice a day.
• Meeting rooms are locked and are to be prebooked and should not be used otherwise.
All centres have a day cleaning operative Monday to Friday cleaning all communal touch points, kitchen and toilet facilities. The evening cleaning operatives clean all areas including offices.
The Cleaning Operatives use chlorine and alcohol-free, non-toxic, non-irritant, non-corrosive and food safe disinfectant technology, which is proven to be highly effective against both enveloped and non-enveloped viruses, as well as bacteria, bacterial spores and fungi.
The products have been formally tested at accredited laboratories to the recognised BritishStandards, including EN14476 Virucidal Efficacy test protocol and is proven to kill 99.99% of enveloped viruses (such as COVID-19) and non-enveloped viruses within minutes of contact.
incspaces encourages the following:
• Undertake regular good personal hygiene procedures, using hot water and soap to washhands.
• Cough/sneeze into your sleeve, preferably into your elbow. If you use a tissue, discard it properly and clean/sanitise your hands immediately.
• Hand sanitiser is readily available throughout the building and should be used regularly.
• Use of personal hand sanitiser should NOT replace good personal hygiene and operatives should continue to wash their hands where possible.
• incspaces staff and clients must adhere to incspaces Clean Desk policy- All desks should be cleared at the end of the day, except for monitors and laptop stands. All documents or IT peripherals should be stored away where possible.
• Antibacterial handwash, sanitiser and cleaning products meet British Standards.
Customer facing staff
Please be aware of the following procedures in place for customer facing incspaces staff:
• Face coverings are optional, but all are asked to respect other people’s decisions.
• Staff will turn away people with coronavirus symptoms. If a staff member (or someone in their household) or a visitor has a persistent cough, a high temperature or has lost their sense of taste or smell, they should be isolating.
• Encourage visitors to use hand sanitiser or handwashing facilities as they enter the premises.
Ventilation and air conditioning
• We’re working to enhance our HVAC (Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) standards to align with local industry best practices. However, as operational oversight and systems vary by building, our approach to implementation differs on a location-by-location basis.
• Where possible, operating times of HVAC systems are extended before and after people use work areas.
• Natural ventilation is provided through open windows, or through other means such as vents. However, fire doors should not be propped open.
• It is important not to completely close windows and doors when the area is occupied as this can result in very low levels of ventilation.
• Contractors require a building induction before commencing work.
• inscpaces staff are Covid-19 trained, and updated as necessary.
Suspected and confirmed Covid-19 cases in the building
If an individual becomes unwell and believe they have been exposed to COVID-19
• If an individual has COVID-19 symptoms (new continuous cough, fever, new loss of taste or smell) they should be sent home immediately and tell them to book a test online at www.gov.uk or by calling 119 and to follow the stay-at-home guidance.
• incspaces premises are cleaned thoroughly as normal, paying particular attention to anywhere the individual may have touched frequently (door handles, light switches washroom taps etc).
One or more individual tests positive
• The individual must not return to work until they have met local government criteria for discontinuing home isolation.
• The individual is asked to inform their manager/ Health and Safety Representative (HSR).
• Building occupants/visitors/contractors are asked to inform the Centre Manager/ Health and
Safety Representative (HSR) of a confirmed case.
• All areas that may have been contaminated by the individual should be enhanced (deep) cleaned.
• The PHA Contact Tracing Service (CTS) will be in touch with the individual who has tested
Incspaces encourages staff and building occupants to give consent to incspaces to alert close contacts in the building to enable them to isolate and prevent further spread of the virus quickly.
• Not all people the person has met will be close contacts. The CTS will determine this through their discussion.
• All close contacts will then be called by the CTS and told to self-isolate. If they develop symptoms, they should book a PCR test.
• Businesses do not have to close because one employee has tested positive.
Two or more individuals tests positive (possible cluster/ outbreak)
• Follow the guidance above.
• Where two or more cases may be linked through their employment or attendance at a common business or setting, the HSR will notify the PHA, and they will consider this and assess if further investigation is needed. Two cases linked to a setting is not necessarily an outbreak as the link may be coincidental.
• The PHA may contact incspaces to get information and give advice on what to do. This could mean enhanced cleaning, testing of all employees or other preventative measures to break the chain of infection. These are determined on a case-by-case basis.
• PHA will work with incspaces until any outbreak or cluster is appropriately managed and the business can operate safely.
Covid-19 is classified as RIDDOR and requires reporting with cases of, or deaths from, occupational exposure, that is, as a result of a person’s work.
• Noncompliance or breach of this policy may result in result in termination of employment or contract.
Policy author: Sarah Wadman. Date Ratified: 1/2/21. Revised 5/2/1. Revised 20/7/21.
Current Version: V3. Next Review date: 20/7/22