Many practices have recently installed a perspex screen as they would like to give their staff and patients a level of reassurance during this COVID-19 period. But do I need to? How do I clean the screen?
Practices across Australia should be guided by their local state or territory health authority.
According to Safe Work Australia, the current Australian Government advice is that it is not necessary to install a screen between workers and the public (customers) as the interaction time between them is shorter. (https://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/covid-19-information-workplaces/industry-information/office/ppe#heading–5–tab-toc-do_i_need_to_install_screens_in_the_workplace?)
If you choose to install a perspex screen you need to ensure that the screen is fit for purpose and protects workers from droplet spray. Completing a risk assessment will assist you in deciding what type of screen is best for your workplace. The screen must allow the worker to safely work and protect their face from exposure to droplet spray. Be aware that installing a perspex screen may result in other Work, Health and Safety risks that you will need to consider.
Safe Work Australia asks you to consult with workers about installing perspex screens, and provide appropriate training and instructions to workers who will use them, if you decide to install them.
How do I clean the perspex screen?
Perspex screens should be cleaned in the same manner as other frequently handled objects or surfaces.
The Safe Work Australia cleaning guide provides comprehensive information on cleaning and disinfecting, including for specific surfaces.
Other PPE measures in practices
Practices, especially in high risk areas, are taking a variety of steps to protect staff and patients in high risk areas include: frequent cleaning; using hand sanitiser; wearing face masks, gloves or eye protection; taking temperatures; and asking patients to wait outside until it’s time for their appointment.