Fresh COVID guidelines from Health Ministry for offices

With all Central government staff being asked to attend office on all working days, social distancing, masks and hygiene procedures have been made mandatory

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Union Ministry of Health has issued fresh guidelines for offices as more and more offices are opening up. All Central government employees have been asked to attend office on working days, as per orders from the Personnel Ministry. In May 2020, only 50 per cent employees below the level of Deputy Secretary were being allowed to work from their offices, whereas the rest were attending in different time slots.

In case COVID-19 cases are reported, offices may resume operations after adequate disinfection. They need not seal the premises or close the office.

If only a couple of cases of infection are reported, only the places or areas used or visited by the patient(s) in the past 48 hours need to be disinfected before resuming work.

If the number of cases or infections is more than a couple, the entire block or building will have to be disinfected.

The offices situated in containment zones will remain closed except for medical and essential services, while establishments outside the containment zone will be allowed to open.

Hand hygiene and thermal screening are mandatory at the entrance of offices and entry should be allowed only to asymptomatic staff / visitors.

All employees and people visiting the office premises have to maintain at least six feet social distancing in all common areas, wear masks at all times and wash their hands frequently.

Videoconferencing is encouraged for meetings wherever possible.

Any employee found to be infected, in spite of precautions, must be kept isolated from others at the workplace, before being shifted.

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