Assess your risk of exposure: NSC releases statement on coronavirus

Photo: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Itasca, IL — The National Safety Council is urging employers – particularly those in the health care sector, those with employees who travel internationally and those in the international travel industry – to assess their risk of exposure to the coronavirus and ensure procedures are in place to effectively control transmission.

In a statement released Jan. 31, NSC notes that “Workplace illness prevention training is imperative for all employees, and employers should provide it.”

In relation to 2019-nCoV, NSC echoes recommendations from OSHA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. They include:

  • Practice proper infection control and sterilization measures.
  • Frequently wash hands with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you’re sick, and see a doctor immediately to be evaluated for 2019-nCoV.
  • Insist infected workers fully recover before returning to work.
  • Avoid sending staff on business trips to China, where the virus originated and has yet to be contained. The U.S. State Department is advising against all travel to China.

Employees who have traveled to areas with heightened levels of exposure should inform their employers immediately.

CDC will provide an update on the coronavirus at 11 a.m. Eastern on Feb. 7. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, in partnership with CDC, hosted a webinar on understanding the coronavirus on Jan. 27.