How to Create a Safe Workplace for your Office or Work Environment for Employees?
As the covid 19 vaccine programme gains momentum and companies consider their strategies for the way their office will look in the future, there are undoubtedly going to be offices and workplaces. Many organisations need to develop their next generation of talent, embed the culture and develop relationships within the workplace.
Some organisations and leaders such as Jamie Dimon from JP Morgan Chase are coming out publicly and firmly that there is no substitute for being in the office. Whatever the right strategy for a particular organisation is, there is likely to be an office or workplace.
Many employers have reconfigured office space to facilitate greater social distancing between desks. The HSE in Ireland has published some valuable information about steps that an organisation can take to include return to work forms.
Many organisations are actively using cost-effective rapid antigen tests to give comfort to the team, that the office is safe and giving confidence to remote workers that the office is safe to return to.
These rapid antigen tests are very affordable and depending on the type of test, it can be as simple as one nasal swab administered by a registered nurse.
We have multiple case studies where organisations are using a testing programme and it is set to become a feature of life in the workplace and social activities. In Ireland, events are starting to happen with testing as a means to get the sector moving again as a recent festival in Sligo demonstrated the possibilities.
Internal Covid Testing Programme
We spoke to Ryan O’Flaherty about how Access Healthcare is running its internal Covid 19 testing programme.
“Nursing is obviously an essential service and we need to have some staff in the office to provide compliance, uniforms and identity verification services to the hospitals, care homes and companies across Ireland”.
Access Healthcare conducts rapid antigen tests on its team every Monday morning. “We purchase the tests at a relatively low cost and then we most importantly use a registered nurse to administer the tests. It is widely accepted that the tests need to be done by a trained professional and if not, it undermines the entire programme”.
The testing is conducted quickly and simply. Staff only enter the building to the test area, at the front of the building. Then exit the building for 15 minutes until a negative result is confirmed. In the testing room, they just write their name with a number, and the registered nurse writes the number on the test.
“The team remains outdoors until the test result is confirmed and the team normally enjoys a conversation and a few stories about the weekend, it is a short and effective bonding session for the team”.
To ensure that people aren’t congregating in large groups, as soon as the results are ready, they can enter the workspace. Each Covid Test takes about 1 minute with results within 15 minutes. This isn’t a substitute for other Covid 19 pandemic precautions in the office, but it gives a team a strong sense of safety in the office. The tests are now very affordable and we do need to pay a nurse for a 4-hour minimum shift.
Access Healthcare supplies registered nurses for these Covid testing programmes, so please feel to reach out to Ryan O’Flaherty to find out more.