Colocation is a remarkable tool used to bring the project team together. Unfortunately, with the team comes all of the team members’ germs. Most colocation spaces emphasize the importance of team work and accessibility and are often set up so that everyone can work together in an open floor plan. While this is great for team alignment, it is also an easy environment for germs to be spread from one person to another.
Germs and diseases are a common workplace threat, as they can spread quickly and cause sickness and productivity losses. We can reduce the spread of the common cold and flu in workplace by practicing good cough and sneeze etiquette (covering the mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing reduces the likelihood of cold and flu viruses becoming airborne and/or contaminating surfaces and other objects in the work environment), and encouraging employees to stay home when they are sick.
Staying healthy reduces the risk of infections like cold and flu. Common tips to maintain a healthy life style include:
- Maintain a healthy diet
- Exercise regularly
- Avoid stress
- Get plenty of sleep
- Avoid tobacco products
- Stay properly hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids and avoid high concentrations of caffeine
- Drink alcohol in moderation
Hand washing is an effective way to prevent the spread of infectious diseases, including cold and flu viruses. Wash your hands regularly throughout the day (and encourage your colleagues to do the same) using the correct hand washing technique (e.g. lathering with soap for 15 seconds) or with an alcohol-based disinfectant. Washing your hands at specific times associated with infection also reduces cold and flu transmission, for example:
- After coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose
- Before touching your face
- After touching contaminated objects such as tissues
- After cleaning surfaces which may be contaminated
- After shaking hands with someone known or suspected to be infected
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