COVID-19 Safety and Service Enhancements
We remain committed to being part of the solution in stopping the spread of COVID-19, and know that routine maintenance cleaning is the first line of defense against this and any other virus.
To help make sure we can serve our customers safely, and to ensure we are delivering maximum benefit, we have made the following changes in the interest of both safety and effectiveness in beating the virus. These policies have all been informed by seeking broad agreement across our major sources and ensuring all steps are backed with a sound understanding of the science behind them.
Changes to What and How We Clean in the Home
- Sanitize high-touch areas: Per CDC guidance and industry best practice, we will now sanitize all high-touch areas of your home (door knobs, cabinet handles, light switch plates, etc) using a .5% Hydrogen Peroxide solution, which has been shown to be effective in inactivating human coronavirus.
- Additional Equipment Sanitization: We will now sanitize the high-touch areas on our equipment between each visit. We will also sanitize any part of our equipment that comes into contact with surfaces in your home, including vacuum heads and vacuum cords.
- Additional cross-contamination precautions: We will continue to use microfiber cleaning cloths, proven to be effective against removing pathogens from surfaces rather than just pushing them around like cotton or paper. However, we will place all used cloths in a plastic bag unique to each home. We are also eliminating feather dusters and using all microfiber dusters, which will be changed out between each home.
Changes to How we Operate
- Daily Employee Health Screenings: Each day upon clocking in to work, employees must answer the following health screening questions. Every employee’s temperature is taken before they depart our office to ensure it is below the CDC guideline threshold of 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Have you or a household member knowingly been exposed or in contact with anyone exposed to the Novel Coronavirus (aka COVID-19) in the past 21 days?
- Have you or a household member visited or been in contact with anyone who has traveled outside the United States in the last 30 days?
- Have you or a household member been in close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 or diagnosed with Pneumonia of unknown cause or a person who has been under quarantine in the past 21 days?
- Are you currently or in the past 14 days experiencing, flu-like symptoms, shortness of breath, fever, cough, or breathing difficulty?
- Client Health Self-Screens: We have presented a similar series of questions to our customers, and they will be posted on our website and contained in our reminder emails, reminding customers to inform us if they are sick so we can reschedule their visit.
- Switch to Solo Cleaners Only: We cannot practice social distancing in a car. Also, having one person in a home reduces contact between employees and between our customers and staff. So, we will be moving away from a “team cleaning” model to one of solo cleaners (teams of one) until social distancing guidelines are relaxed. For our largest jobs, we will send two staff members but in separate vehicles, and they will practice social distancing while in the home.
- Staggered Shift Starts: Rather than start everyone’s day at the same time and kick off with a big staff meeting, we will stagger shift starts and bring our morning meeting virtual, allowing no more than 7 staff members in our office at the same time, so we can ensure social distancing can be maintained.
Additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for Staff
- Face Masks: The coronavirus is spread through respiratory droplets. Face masks prevent our staff from inadvertently spreading their own respiratory droplets into your home, therefore protecting you and other members of your household. Masks also help prevent staff members from touching their nose or mouth, thereby helping to protect them from infection. Until we can be sure our healthcare professionals have sufficient supplies, we will be using homemade cloth masks, as per CDC guidance.
- Shoe Coverings: While there is no evidence of transmission via footwear, out of an abundance of caution we will be wearing disposable shoe coverings in your home, and disposing of them once we leave each home. This will prevent any potential cross-contamination from footwear.
- Goggles: Goggles help keep our staff members from touching their eyes, and also prevent splashing from surfaces in pathogen-rich areas of the home from reaching their eyes.
- Gloves: We have always worn gloves when cleaning the toilet and will continue to do so, but we will now be wearing gloves throughout the home, changing them before and after cleaning a bathroom, of course.
None of the above changes would be effective without specialized training for all staff members to ensure they are equipped with the knowledge and skills to be confident and safe while cleaning homes in a COVID-19 world.
Each returning staff member has completed a 4-hour COVID-19 Re-entry Training that covers all of the above material, plus:
- The science behind how to inactivate the virus
- More about the virus itself and how it spreads
- The science behind the cleaning protocols we have put into place
- Proper PPE use: donning, doffing, sanitizing, when and how to use and what each piece does and does not do.
- COVID-19 Symptoms and how they compare to other common ailments, like the flu, common cold and seasonal allergies
- Understanding who is at higher risk of complications and why
- Handwashing for healthcare settings (this is the most thorough) plus more about why handwashing is so important
- How to best keep self and others safe
- Breaking the Chain of Infection from COVID-19
Our existing training program is among the best in the industry, so we had a solid foundation to build on to get our staff members up to speed quickly.
With the above changes, we are creating a strong, safe and effective model for cleaning in a COVID-19 world. We hope to be serving you again soon!