In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released guidance for cleaning and disinfecting a workplace if someone is sick.
This includes guidance for cleaning and disinfecting facilities. For those businesses and institutions faced with cleaning and disinfecting a building or facility where someone is sick, the CDC has published specific recommendations. As of May 2020, those recommendations included the following:
- Close off areas used by the person who is sick.
- Companies do not necessarily need to close operations, if they can close off affected areas.
- Open outside doors and windows to increase air circulation in the area.
- Wait 24 hours before cleaning or disinfecting. If 24 hours is not feasible, wait as long as possible.
- Clean and disinfect all areas used by the person who is sick, such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electronic equipment like tablets, touch screens, keyboards, remote controls and ATM machines.
- Vacuum the space if needed. Use a vacuum equipped with high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter, if available.
- Do not vacuum a room or space that has people in it. Wait until the room or space is empty to vacuum, such as at night for common spaces, or during the day for private rooms.
- Consider temporarily turning off room fans and the central HVAC system that services the room or space, so that particles that escape from vacuuming will not circulate throughout the facility.
- Once the area has been appropriately disinfected, it can be opened for use.
- Workers without close contact with the person who is sick can return to work immediately after disinfection.
- If more than 7 days since the person who is sick visited or used the facility, additional cleaning and disinfection is not necessary.
- Continue routine cleaning and disinfection. This includes everyday practices that businesses and communities normally use to maintain a healthy environment.