New COVID-19 norms: Offices can resume after disinfection if case reported, says Health Ministry

New COVID-19 norms: Offices can resume after disinfection if case reported

New Delhi: Offices can now call employees back to work from premises where a case of Covid-19 was reported following proper disinfection. In its new standard operating procedures (SOPs), the Union Health Ministry said that there is no need to close or seal the premises.

“In case of one or two Covid-19 cases reported in offices, the disinfection procedure will be limited to places/areas occupied and visited by the patient in past 48 hours and work can be resumed after disinfection as per laid down protocol,” read the Ministry guidelines.

The guidelines, however, stated that in the event of a larger number of cases being reported, the entire building or block would need to be disinfected before work can be resumed in the area.

The new rules will apply only to places lying outside the containment zones. Except for medical and essential services, all other offices in containment areas will remain closed, according to the Ministry.

“Meetings, as far as feasible, should be done through video conferencing,” said the guidelines.

The Ministry further said that hand hygiene and thermal screening will be mandatory at the entrance of office premises and that only asymptomatic staff and visitors would be allowed to enter.

It added that all employees and visitors will have to observe the standard COVID-19 measures such as maintaining a minimum distance of six feet in common places, use of masks and face covers and practicing frequent hand washing.

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(With inputs from IANS)

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