CDC: Household Cleaning and Sanitizing amid COVID-19
Posted On: April 16, 2020
Many of you have been trying to help your residents maintain the best sanitizing practices amidst the pandemic. Here are some tips from the CDC on how to go about cleaning and disinfecting living spaces.
How the virus spreads
It is essential to know how the virus spreads. Scientists believe it spreads mainly from person-to-person. More specifically, it spreads among people who are in close proximity (within 6 feet) of one another through respiratory droplets, which means drops of saliva or mucus released from a person’s mouth and nose when they cough, sneeze and even talk. The infectious transaction happens when those droplets land in the mouths or noses of others or possibly inhaled into the lungs. Other recent studies have suggested that the virus can even spread by people who are not showing symptoms. Therefore the BEST way to prevent illness or the spread to others is to avoid being exposed or exposing others by keeping a proper social distance from others (about 6 feet).
It can also happen through the touching of unsanitized surfaces followed by the touching of one’s face. Specifically, the droplets landing on a surface, someone touching that unsanitized surface, then touching their face and breathing in the infectious germs. Therefore it is important to maintain clean, sanitized surfaces and living spaces for your residents.
Here’s a helpful video from a local news station in Texas that briefly covered this topic:
Cleaning and Sanitizing Practices
As the video suggests, most disinfectant cleaning products will work fine, but with the high demand for those products right now, it is helpful to know how to make homemade versions that will work just as effectively. The CDC emphasizes that the first few things when preparing to clean and sanitize a space is to:
Never mix bleach with ammonia or any other cleaner.
Wear rubber or other non-porous boots, gloves, and eye protection.
Try not to breathe in product fumes. If using products indoors, open windows and doors to allow fresh air to enter.
The following graphic is a helpful table that gives direction on how to clean various types of areas and items. It includes the types of areas to be cleaned, the proper measurements of bleach and water, and the cleaning steps to effectively sanitize.
On top of this, it is also important for property management to put into place safety protocols when performing tasks in the office and on properties. Whether it be coming up with different ways to perform normal tasks or having additional tasks to clean after being in an area. Having a plan in your daily routine to decrease the risk of the spread will protect you, your residents, and your staff.
When it comes to the office, we are limiting interactions with all residents. Management is corresponding with all residents via email, telephone, and fax. However, as a safety precaution for the residents at St. Charles Villas and Four Winds East, we are wiping down and sanitizing the mailbox stations daily since there are many different people coming into contact with the mailboxes on a daily basis. Lastly, Maintenance is only addressing emergency work orders, so he is making sure that he wears a mask and gloves when he enters a unit. It is very important that maintenance staff changes his/her gloves whenever they enter a different unit.
A comment on the topic from our very own Roslyn Perryman, Property Manager for Navigate Asset Management
There’s no such thing as being too redundant when it comes to this.
While some of this information may sound redundant to some of us, it is vital to the health of your residents, your staff, and even yourself to be constantly aware of the current risk and the proper practices to prevent the spread.
It is easy to assume that everyone understands this crisis at the same level, but that is simply NOT the case. Never get in the habit of withholding safety information from your residents because you think they might already know it. In reality, all your residents are still receiving their information on the virus at different rates. Some of your residents may continuously check the news for updates while other residents may be trying to learn the new TikTok dance craze all day.
So when considering sending out safety updates/reminders to your residents, remember, while some are probably just as up-to-date as you are, there are certainly those who are NOT. So be sure to keep your residents and staff updated and reminded as best as you can on what they can do to prevent infection and help slow the spread of this virus.