COVID-19 POLICY

Pandemics

Policy

Introduction

When a disease outbreak happens it can cause widespread illness and disruption to normal business services. There are many types of diseases that can cause a widespread outbreak.

In the event of pandemic outbreak, you can play a key role in protecting your health as well as in limiting the negative impact on the organisation’s activities.

Policy – Statement of Intent

The aim of this policy is to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of our employees and others who may be affected by our work activities during a pandemic and to adopt measures and advice required by Government Public Health bodies and comply with all relevant all health and safety relevant legislation, including:

  • Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974
  • Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999
  • The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (as amended).

Employer Responsibilities

To ensure that all work activities are undertaken by the organisation giving due regard to current measures and advice required by Government Public Health bodies, we will:

  • appoint a person within the organisation who will be responsible for identifying and keeping up-to-date with current measures and advice;
  • ensure that credible and reliable sources of information are identified and these resources are used to establish the organisation’s safe working procedures;
  • ensure that relevant risk assessments are reviewed to take account of measures and advice required to be taken by Government Public Health bodies
  • ensure that relevant risk assessments take account of persons not in our employment but who could be affected by risks to their health and safety, arising out of, or in connection with our work activities;
  • provide such information, instruction, training and supervision as is necessary to ensure all employees and others understand the measures to be taken to protect themselves, their colleagues and any other person who may be affected by our work activities;
  • ensure that adequate resources are made available to fulfil the requirements of this policy; and
  • review this policy at least annually or more frequently if significant changes occur.

To minimise disruption to normal business service by a pandemic outbreak goods, services and functions of the organisation that are essential to its operations and survival will be defined and the Company will:

  • consider split location working and whether functions/services can be carried out across different work sites;
  • the Company will establish flexible working policies, enabling employees and line managers to agree homeworking, different shift patterns, or relocation to a site more local to the employee’s home where appropriate;
  • develop an order of succession to detail which functions/services can be carried out by employees other than those normally given the task and train non-essential back-up employees to perform essential tasks;
  • ensure wherever possible that all equipment essential to maintain the Company’s operations is available in sufficient numbers;
  • only essential business travel will be permitted during a pandemic, and procedures for approving travel will be tightened, requiring prior authorisation;
  • the Company will monitor employees’ travel plans and new procedures for notifying employees’ location during periods of business travel will be introduced in the event of a pandemic;
  • employees will be provided, wherever possible, with assistance to access government- and employer-provided support services, including help and advice with personal, financial and psychological issues;
  • introducing short time working or a period of temporary lay off without pay (with the exception of any statutory entitlement) where this is necessary.

This list of measures is not definitive and the Company will take any other steps deemed necessary in the circumstances.

Employee Responsibilities

You will be expected to adhere to any guidance and instructions issued to you by the Company during the pandemic.  These may include:

  • asking you to be flexible, to a reasonable extent, in terms of your working hours, to meet the needs of the business.  At times the needs of the Company will require your working hours to be modified and you will be expected to vary your hours of work accordingly;
  • advising employees to avoid face-to-face meetings and to use teleconferencing, videoconferencing and the internet instead, where possible;
  • advising employees to avoid crowded places or heavily populated gatherings (eg sporting events);
  • advising employees to avoid congregating at break times, including in work-provided [restaurants/cafeteria]; and
  • avoiding travelling at busy periods on public transport (e.g. staggered starting times).

Procedure

To fulfil our responsibilities as outlined above, we will:

  • appoint a person within the organisation who will be responsible for keeping up-to-date with current measures and advice from the sources of information noted above;
  • prepare a list of credible and reliable sources of information and use these resources to review and revise risk assessments and establish safe working procedures;
  • identify all operations and activities undertaken by our employees that could be affected;
  • relevant risk assessments will be reviewed and revised frequently where necessary, taking into account:-
    • measures and advice required to be taken by the identified credible and reliable sources;
    • vulnerable employees;
    • persons not in our employment but who could be affected by risks to their health and safety, arising out of, or in connection with our work activities;
  • establish a robust means of two-way communication with our employees and others who could be affected;
  • Inform, instruct, train and supervise all employees in the measures to be taken to protect themselves, their colleagues and any other person who may be affected by our work activities; and
  • provide adequate resources to fulfil the requirements of this policy.

Additional Information

General

UK Government

Scottish Government

Welsh Assembly

Northern Ireland Assembly

National Health Service (NHS)

NHS Scotland

NHS Wales

Health and Social Care Services Northern Ireland

Public Health England

Health Protection Scotland

Public Health Wales

Public Health Northern Ireland

Health and Safety Executive

Infection Control Policy

MentorLearn e-Learning course

Pandemic Procedures

 

Specific – Coronavirus

MentorLearn e-Learning course

Coronavirus e-Learning Course

Mentor Frequently Asked Questions – Coronavirus (COVID-19)

NHS Coronavirus

UK Government Response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Scottish Government Response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Health Protection Scotland Resource Pack – Coronavirus (COVID-19)

UK Government Business Support Help Line

 

Risk Assessments

Risk Assessment InComm Temporary Office Space

Risk Assessment InComm Main office

 

Issue 1: 16032020