This guidance provides recommendations on the cleaning and disinfections of rooms or areas of those with suspected or with confirmed COVID-19 have visited. It is aimed at limiting the survival of novel coronavirus in key environments. These recommendations will be updated if additional information becomes available.
These guidelines are focused on community, non-healthcare facilities (e.g., schools, institutions of higher education, offices, daycare centers, businesses, community centers) that do and do not house persons overnight. These guidelines are not meant for cleaning staff in healthcare facilities or repatriation sites, households, or for others for whom specific guidance already exists.
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Cleaning and Disinfection After Persons Suspected/Confirmed to Have COVID-19 Have Been in the Facility
Timing and location or cleaning and disinfection of surfaces
- At a school, daycare center, office, or other facility that does not house people overnight
- At a facility that does house people over night
How to Clean and Disinfect
- If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaned using a detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection
- For disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants would be effective
- Prepare a bleach solution
Linens, Clothing, and Other Items That Go in the Laundry
- Do not shake dirty laundry; this minimizes the possibility of dispersing virus through the air
- Wash items appropriate in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions. If possible, launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely. Dirty laundry that has been in contact with an ill person can be washed with other people's items
- Clean and disinfect hampers or other carts for transporting laundry according to guidance above for hard or soft surfaces
Personal Protective Equipement (PPE) and Hand Hygiene
- Cleaning staff should wear disposable gloves and gowns for all tasks in the cleaning process, including handling trash
- Gloves should be removed after cleaning a room or area occupied by ill persons. Clean hands immediately after cloves are removed.
- Cleaning staff should immediately report breaches in PPE (e.g., tear in gloves) or any potential exposures to their supervisor.
- Cleaning staff and others should clean hands often, including immediately after removing gloves and after contact with an ill person, by washing hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available and hands are not visibly dirty, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60%-95% alcohol may be used. However, if hands are visibly dirty, always wash hands with soap and water.
- Follow normal preventive actions while at work and home, including cleaning hands and avoiding touching eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
Additional Considerations for Employers
- Employers should work with their local and state health department to ensure appropriate local protocols and guidelines, such as updated/additional guidance for cleaning and disinfection
- Employers should educate staff and workers performing cleaning, laundry, and trash pick-up activities to recognize the symptoms of COVID-19 and provide instructions on what to do if they develop symptoms within 14 days after their last possible exposure to the virus
- Employers should develop polices for worker protection and provide training to all cleaning staff on site prior to providing cleaning tasks
- Employers must ensure workers are trained on the hazards of the cleaning chemicals used in the workplace in accordance with OSHA's Hazard Communication standard
- Employers must comply with OSHA's standards on Bloodborne Pathogens, including proper disposal of regulated waste, and PPE
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