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Thread: COVID-19 The responsible SA Business Response

  1. #1
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    COVID-19 The responsible SA Business Response

    By mid-morning Friday 6th March I was left in no doubt as to the serious impact COVID-19 a.k.a Coronavirus was going to have on South Africa. In just two hours our little hygiene company had more enquiries for sanitizer type products than we have had for the previous two years.

    And it didn't take long to find the reality was grim. Chasing our supply chain to get santizer products, it was quickly established that demand had just massively outstripped available supply. This past week I have spent much time trying to deal with the supply chain problem (more about that later), but what I want to kick off here first is a very frank discussion about what is the appropriate, responsible response for a South African Business to this crisis.

    Based on experience from around the world, it is clear the harsh reality is there are two serious threats posed by the COVID-19 pandemic to consider:

    • Widespread infection will quickly result in a shortage of medical resources for those who need medical help.
    • While it seems the health impact will be pretty small for the vast majority of us, the economic impact is likely to be significant and affect all of us

    So measures need to protect staff and clients as much as possible, reduce transmission rates, and do whatever we can to manage the economic impact.

    During the past week each division within our group has met to develop a strategy to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic threat. My two headline points arising from those meetings are these:

    The time to change our habits and practices is NOW.
    Reported cases in SA are still pretty low, but breakout and rapid escalation seems highly likely, even inevitable. (I see the NICD report for today has reported cases in SA up to 51, so things are moving along quickly.)

    It takes time to change habits and practices. If we can make these changes now (before the virus is widespread), we'll be better placed for the day personal exposure comes and our habits and practices become critical to our personal outcome.

    The potential economic impact strikes closer to home than the health threat.
    Most of us are not going to face a serious health impact from this virus, so it's easy to think "no big deal." However, ask how well placed staff and the business is to face a 30 to 60 day loss of income tends to sharply focus the minds of those around the table...

    I'll start covering other points and thoughts that have come up so far in following posts. Feel free to add your own thoughts and points along the way.
    Last edited by Dave A; 16-Mar-20 at 07:37 AM.

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    I had a bad feeling about this...so i decided to pay all my bills 2 months in advance... i dont know that was such a smart decision...if you dont pay your bills once this virus gets into full swing ...nobody is going to be knocking on your door ...especially if you have a sign which says ...sick ...self isolation

    I am thinking it might have been a better idea to withdraw all the money i had in the bank and lock it away... winter isnt even here yet ...this virus is only starting... this is going to go on for months.

    We have planted our veg garden full and busy making more space around the yard to grow more.

    I am going to start fasting and changing my eating habits today.

    People are worried about hand wash and masks and toilet paper

    People who are going to be worst affected... smoker ...obese and one who have a low immune system.

    what we should be doing is getting as fit and healthy as possible and talking vitamins to bboost your immune system.

    Stop wasting money on silly shyte... clamp down expenditure.

    stop shaking hands ...hugging and all that stuff.

    stay out building with aircons... they just circulate the virus.
    Last edited by ians; 15-Mar-20 at 05:14 PM.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Santize. Santize. Sanitize.

    Stopping transmission via contact points is reported as critical to slowing down the spread. Our tactic is to sanitise high touch areas regularly (at least daily, and in many instances even more regularly) and have sanitizer dispensers available at critical points.

    At our business premises we have sanitizer dispensers at the entrance, at the biometric clocking machine (everyone to use santizer on their hands before or after every clocking), at the kitchen, in the change room and in each of the ablutions. We have a sanitizer dispenser in every vehicle, and we are giving every member of staff a full sanitizer dispenser to take home for home use for them and their family. We have sanitizer gel and sanitizer fluid available, and staff are free to choose their preference.

    The focus on having sanitizer fluid and sanitizer gel in abundant supply and actively encouraging staff and visitors to use it is because while apparently you can wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds to achieve a similar result, the hard truth is most people don't and won't.

    The objective is to sanitize on arrival, santize before entering a client's premises, santize upon leaving a client's premises, and whenever one deems appropriate in between.

    I am looking closely at options that will reduce the use of door handles...

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Stop touching your face.

    This point goes with frequent proper cleansing or sanitising of our hands.

    One of the habits we need to change is reducing how often we touch our face. The objective is to only touch your face after you have sanitised your hands.

    The point here is the virus can't walk or fly - it needs our assistance to get where it wants to get, our respiratory system. It is not trivial to stop our hands from touching surfaces that may have an active load of Coronavirus. However, we can't get infected through our skin. If we only touch our face or handle food after sanitizing our hands, the risk of transmission from touching surfaces is significantly reduced.

    I've been working hard on this as a personal discipline for a week now, and I'm getting pretty good at it - even when there's an itch...
    Apparently it takes 21 days to change a habit, so still some conscious effort required.
    Last edited by Dave A; 15-Mar-20 at 09:42 PM.

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    The big question is gona be how will already struggling companies still pay wages... how will us little companies pay wages...i could maybe pay wages for a month or 2 tops then what?

    What is gona happen as work flow reduces... companies cant cant pay your invoices? This year hasnt been a good start for many... i keep hearing comments about how fortunate i am to have so much work (this is going to change soon) ...most small businesses are already struggling since the beginning of this year... add a virus.

    What is going to happen to big companies which cannot get product ...which will result in plants closing... imagine having to pay wages for 150 staff members.

    After Cyril had his say this evening... events are gona be canceled... we talking comrades ...the Epic... The tour Durban ...these are massive events which generate revenue for local business of all types.

    This country can barely survive without a virus.

    Time to stock up on rat packs and similar type food... dont forget your toilet paper before the shelves get empty... we gona need a t least a 6 month supply

    YOu gona need to adapt to survive.

    My priority is gona be solar power ...time to send the generator in for a service ...fill up all the gas bottles 2 last around 8 months ...maybe get another just in case... i have fridges ...lights and stoves which can all run on gas...it will feel like we are camping.

    Got the plastic pool sorted ...it works as a pool to cool off in the hot days... but also works great as a backup water supply....idle for washing clothes ...flushing toilets etc.

    Got my old geyser up in the roof still which is idle for water storage .

    Veg garden is looking good ...we have a slug problem ...need to find a way to get rid of them.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    What to do if you are showing symptoms?

    Two main indicators of potential Coronavirus infection is a temperature from 37.8 degrees Celsius and above, and a new cough.

    If you are showing symptoms of Coronavirus infection:

    • Do not go to work - no-one is going to thank you for introducing them to the virus or risking shutting down the workplace.
    • Do not just arrive at a medical facility to report for testing - if medical assistance isn't carefully managed, you run the risk of shutting down the facility for a while and placing exposed medical staff to 14 days of self-isolation.
    • Do not use public transport
    • Try not to expose other people to yourself
    • Do self isolate for seven days. It is understood you are at your most contagious for the first three days of symptoms and should no longer be contagious after seven days from the onset of symptoms.
    • You can call 0800 029 999 (South African COVID-19 support number) for advice and assistance as to what to do next.


    Probably worth mentioning here that surgical masks are designed to inhibit the wearer from transmitting potential infectious material into the environment and onto others, rather than keep infectious material out of the wearer's respiratory system. If someone starts coughing around you, it is probably more beneficial for them to put on a mask to limit potential spread than for you to pop one on to keep the infection out.

    (I predict people with coughs are about to become social outcasts, particularly in crowded spaces such as public transport).

    There's quite good page on self-isolation issues from Sky News here.

    In a South African context, quite a few of these DO's and DON'Ts come with particular challenges. We should dig into these deeper in later posts...

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    Thanks Dave

    One question. Am I missing something ? Why the run on toilet paper ?

    One would have thought that food and water comes first if one has to self quarantine.

    We have made a concerted effort as far as sanitizing is concerned, but our usage of toilet paper has not increased.

    Apparently in Australia and England, the shelves are empty.

    Derek

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    Because there seems to be a shortage of supply from China (...and people are STUPID)


    https://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/he...b6f86de1252f0d

    “I’m buying it because everyone else is doing it,” said Lisa. It was the simple reason many gave.

    https://www.news.com.au/finance/busi...474955e94deb4d
    Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.
    ― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derlyn View Post
    Thanks Dave

    One question. Am I missing something ? Why the run on toilet paper ?

    One would have thought that food and water comes first if one has to self quarantine.

    We have made a concerted effort as far as sanitizing is concerned, but our usage of toilet paper has not increased.

    Apparently in Australia and England, the shelves are empty.

    Derek
    Just because of panic buying... people are stocking up for months to come... toilet paper is not only used for wiping your backside ...it is also used to blow your nose... so if you get the flu ...you gona be going through rolls of "toilet paper" or so people think.

    hand wash is also "out of stock" ...all the shelves were empty ...dischem had 1 bottle left.

    A couple weeks ago i saw and ad for bulk mask ...at the time i wasnt thinking smart ...the person had hundreds of boxes for sale... they are all sold... this is how people make money.

    if you were in the SADF doing basics....the smart people would stand in the que and buy up all the chocolates and coke... people were prepared to pay R10 for a coke ...i am talking back in 1983 ...same thing is going to happen now ...the smart people will buy up everything and then triple the price and make some good money.

    Where is buffet and gates investing all their money ...yip... world health and vaccines.

    Business is booming for the smart people.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

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    I see one of the points stated on the sms doing the rounds.

    "Funding made available to reinforce the system introduction"... lets hope this is not just another opportunity for certain people to take advantage....lets hope it gets used for what it is intended for ... this country has a bad reputation for for people with sticky fingers.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

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