Sat. Apr 4th, 2020

HSSE WORLD

Health, Safety, Security and Environment

E-Books: COVID-19 Information and Risk Assessment

3 min read

This guidance has been collated using information available in the public domain from the following bodies and organisations:
• The United Kingdom National Health Service (UK NHS)
• The World Health Organisation (WHO)
• The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)
• The United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office (UK FCO)
• GOV.UK
• The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
(Where operating outside of the UK please refer to Government or health service communications in addition to information provided below)
Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was identified in 2019 in Wuhan, China. This is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans.
Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. Detailed investigations found that SARS-CoV was transmitted from civet cats to humans and MERS-CoV from dromedary camels to humans. Several known coronaviruses are circulating in animals that have not yet infected humans.Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.
 COVID-19 Risk
The UK Chief Medical Officers have raised the risk to the public from low to moderate. Health professionals are working to contact anyone who has been in close contact with people who have coronavirus. Based on studies of infection and mortality rates globally by WHO Researchers it is believed the current mortality rate for the virus is 3.4% as of 05 March 2020.
UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock has advised that the UK government’s “very best assessment” was that the UK mortality rate would be approximately “2% or, likely, lower”. But it is dependant on a range of contributory factors including age, sex, general health and health system.

COVID-19 Symptoms
Current symptoms of the virus may include:
• a cough
• a high temperature
• shortness of breath
These symptoms do not necessarily mean you have the illness. The symptoms are similar to other illnesses that are much more common at this time of year, such as cold and flu.

How is the Virus Spread?
As the virus has not been encountered before the NHS and other bodies do not know exactly how the virus spreads from person to person. It is currently believed that like more common viruses it is most likely spread in cough droplets. It’s very unlikely it can be spread through things like packages or food. Viruses like coronavirus cannot live outside the body for very long.
 Public Places
Most people can continue to go to work, school and other public places. Current advice states that you only need to stay away from public places (self-isolate) if advised to by the NHS 111 Service or a medical professional.
How to Avoid Catching and Spreading Germs
There are steps that we can all take to help stop viruses like coronavirus spreading.



DO

• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze.
• Put used tissues in the bin immediately.
• Wash your hands with soap and water often – use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
• Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell.




DO NOT

• Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.

INDEX
1. Introduction ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..3
2. COVID-19 Risk…………………………………………………………………………………………………………3
3. COVID-19 Symptoms ……………………………………………………………………………………………….3
4. How is the Virus Spread? ………………………………………………………………………………………….4
5. Public Places…………………………………………………………………………………………………………..4
6. How to Avoid Catching and Spreading Germs……………………………………………………………..4
7. If You Think You Need Medical Advice ……………………………………………………………………….4
8. What Does Self-Isolating Mean?………………………………………………………………………………..4
9. Travel Advice …………………………………………………………………………………………………………..5
10. COVID-19 Treatment ………………………………………………………………………………………………..6
Appendix A Prevention Awareness…………………………………………………………………………………7
Appendix B Risk Assessment ………………………………………………………………………………………..8
Appendix C Additional Information………………………………………………………………………………….14

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