What’s your plan?

 

With the peak of Covid19 in Western Australia expected within the next month, it’s time to have a contingency plan for your business. Having a plan now, will enable you to act decisively and will lower stress levels if Covid19 does affect your business.

Set aside some time to answer these questions and read the information in the links.  If you need further support,  call us and will help you find a solution.  Phone 9848 2065 Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm

 

How can I make my business Covid – Safe?

Employers have a duty under occupational health and safety laws to eliminate or minimise the risks of COVID-19 in the workplace, so far as is reasonably practicable.

A Covid Safety Plan, cleaning schedule, air ventilation, as well as good hygiene and social distancing etc, will ensure that when new cases occur, the potential risk of COVID-19 transmission in your workplace is minimised.

Also, stay home if you are unwell!  If you know a worker is confirmed to have COVID-19, you must ensure that the worker does not return to work while they are infectious. If you notice a worker exhibiting other signs they may be unwell (e.g. frequent sneezing) and you consider they are unfit for work, you should follow your usual workplace policies and procedures. This should include directing the worker to go home. This will minimise the risk of spreading it to others if it is Covid19 and will minimise disruption to your business. Read more

Workplaces should have cleaning and disinfection processes documented and readily available for staff to clean their own workspaces daily and a procedure to follow should a staff member be confirmed with COVID-19. Read more

Effective ventilation can reduce the concentration of airborne SARS[1]CoV-2 by either removing or diluting contaminated indoor air that may contain virus exhaled from infected person(s). This will reduce the risk that the virus will be inhaled by other occupants. Optimising air exchange rates, along with air filtration and purification, are increasingly recognised as being important in reducing the airborne transmission of COVID-19 in indoor spaces – particularly in localities where there is community transmission. Read more

More information from Small Business WA on managing Covid19 in your workplace 

 

 

What will you do if your staff are Covid19 positive, or must Isolate and can’t work for a week or more?

Are your staff well enough to work from home? Can they access your data base? Do they have internet and computer? What about passwords and online security?

If not able to work from home, who will fill in while they are away? What will you do if you have multiple staff on leave?

Over 100 schools across WA have already closed due to quarantine requirements. What will you do if your children must stay home from school? Or your staff must stay home to look after them?

 

 

A staff member at your workplace has returned a positive result for COVID-19. What happens next?

If you suspect someone at your workplace could have the virus or has been exposed follow these steps. Put this into your Covid Safety plan now.       

Call the WA Health Department on 6373 2222 and follow these instructions

Monitor for symptoms and get tested if symptoms develop.

If you meet the definition of a close contact of a COVID-19 positive case get tested immediately and follow the isolation protocols.

More information on quarantine and isolation.

More information on infectious disease in the workplace

If you are not a close contact, and you have no symptoms, you can continue to attend your workplace as usual.

(It is taking a few days for the exposure sites to be listed on the healthywa website. If you meet the definition of a close contact, follow those directions.)

 

 

What will you do if your business is an exposure site

Your Covid Safety Plan should include protocols to manage cleaning and disinfection following notification of a confirmed COVID-19 case. SARS-CoV-2 virus can survive on surfaces for several hours to a few days depending on the amount of virus landing on a surface, the surface type, the temperature, and the humidity, however the virus is rapidly inactivated by alcohol, household bleach and other chemicals.

The term ‘deep-cleaning’ has been loosely used by the media to communicate thorough cleaning and disinfection of a public site that has potentially been exposed to the SARS CoV-2 virus. This terminology is not a quantifiable measure of cleaning, and it is not used by the Department of Health Western Australia. There is no requirement for a certificate of cleaning and disinfection to be issued for the premises to resume routine operations. 

Call the WA Health Department on 6373 2222 and follow their direction.

 

 

How will the level 2 restrictions affect my business

Level 2 measures will apply State-wide from 12:01am, Thursday 3 March. It is hoped these restrictions will be for 1 month. See all level 2 restrictions here.

There is funding available from the state government to assist you manage the cost to your business from restrictions. You can apply for these now. 

 

 

What funding is available?

COVID Business Assistance Package – The State Government has released a general business assistance package   for some businesses impacted by the current downturn due to public health measures (e.g. 2 sqm rule).

The Regional Small Business Support Program provides free financial counselling to regional small businesses affected by COVID-19.  Until 31 December 2022, funding of up to $5,000 is available to help Small Business clients gain access to specialist third-party advice. In Western Australia, this program is administered by Rural West.  More information

If you need to test and isolate, there is funding available from the state government.  

Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment is a lump sum payment to help you during the time you can’t work and earn income because you must self-isolate or quarantine due to COVID-19 or you’re caring for someone who must self-isolate or quarantine due to COVID-19.

 

 

Call us if you need more support!

If we can’t help you solve your problem, we can refer you to a free consultation with Richard Keeler from Albany Business Centre.

Your membership also entitles you to free consultations with Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA (CCIWA)

Call us to organise an appointment with either of these organisations 9848 2065

 

Author: Chamber Admin

Anna