Coronavirus Resource Center

Industry-specific resources for linen, uniform and facility services customers, employees and others, as well as advisories and Executive Orders from state, national and worldwide agencies and organizations pertaining to safe operations as essential services processing reusable textiles during the international COVID-19 Crisis.

UPDATED 2:01 PM EST 7/22/2020


Financial Relief

UPDATED 9:52 AM EST 5/27/2020

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act

FAQs: Employee Retention Credit Under the CARES Act
Treasury Guidance (Members Only)
TRSA CARES Act Overview (Members Only)
TRSA CARES Act Guidance (Members Only)

 

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

This loan program provides loan forgiveness for retaining employees by temporarily expanding the traditional SBA 7(a) loan program.

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Information
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Overview
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Borrower Information
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Borrower Application
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Increase Act of 2020
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Application Q&A (Members Only)
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Additional Guidance
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness Application and Calculator
Updated Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness Guidance
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Review Guidance

 

Economic Industry Disaster Loan (EIDL) Loan Advance

This loan advance will provide up to $10,000 of economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing temporary difficulties.

COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Information
COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Application

 

SBA Express Bridge Loans

Enables small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 quickly.

SBA Express Bridge Loans Information

 

SBA Debt Relief

The SBA is providing a financial reprieve to small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

SBA Debt Relief Information

 

Additional Financial Information

Bill Amendment to PPP, EIDL, and CARES Act

Business Recovery Strategies

UPDATED 10:43 AM EST 6/24/2020

All Market Resources

TRSA COVID-19 Task Force Sign Up
Connecting With Customers in Times of Crisis, McKinsey & Company, April 2020
Coronavirus: Five Strategies for Industrial and Automotive Companies, McKinsey & Company, March 2020

 

F&B/Restaurant

Hygienically Clean Food Service Certification
TRSA F&B/Restaurant Resources
F&B Safety Guide
TRSA Reaches out to Nation’s Governors
TRSA Restaurant Safety Guidance
Restaurant Safety Guidance Media Release
National Restaurant Association (NRA) COVID-19 Reopening Guidance
Georgia Restaurant Reopening Executive Order

F&B/Restaurant Specific News

Delivering When it Matters: Quick-Service Restaurants in Coronavirus Times, McKinsey & Company, April 2020
A Fast Casual CEO Envisions the Industry’s ‘New Normal’, QSR, April 14, 2020
The State of the Restaurant Industry, OpenTable, June 23, 2020

 

Healthcare

Hygienically Clean Healthcare Certification
TRSA Healthcare Resources
American Society for Health Care Engineering (ASHE) Reopening Guidance
Joint Statement: Roadmap for Resuming Elective Surgery after COVID-19 Pandemic

Healthcare Specific News

From “Wartime” to “Peacetime”: Five Stages for Healthcare Institutions in the Battle Against COVID-19, McKinsey & Company, April 2020
Opening Up America Again, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, April 19, 2020

 

Hospitality/Hotel

Hygienically Clean Hospitality Certification
TRSA Hospitality/Hotel Resources
U.S. Travel Association Industry Guidance
American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) StaySafe Cleaning Standards
World Health Organization (WHO) Operational Considerations
TRSA Issues Hospitality Safety Guidance to Governors
TRSA Issues Hospitality Safety Guidance to Mayors
TRSA Issues Hospitality Safety Guidance to County Executives

Hospitality/Hotel Specific News

What US Hotel Recovery Could Look Like After COVID-19, Hotel News Now, April 8, 2020
How the Hotel Industry Will Bounce Back After COVID-19, Travel Pulse, April 2, 2020

 

Industrial/Uniform

Hygienically Clean Food Safety Certification
TRSA Industrial/Uniform Resources
Baird Equity Research: Industrial
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER): Small Businesses Adjusting

Industrial/Uniform Specific News

Rapidly Forecasting Demand and Adapting Commercial Plans in a Pandemic, McKinsey & Company, April 2020
Managing a Manufacturing Plant Through the Coronavirus Crisis, McKinsey & Company, April 2020
Reimagining Stores for Retail’s Next Normal,McKinsey & Company, April 2020

Education and Training

UPDATED 1:34 PM EST 5/19/2020

Restart…a Return to Business

As the curve begins to flatten, and the world moves for a “reactive” to a “recovery” state of mind, organizations need to look at what’s next.   This session examines several areas for consideration both operational and strategically for the next phase of business recovery – the Restart.

The session will examine the key areas for Restart:

    1. Staffing – When, How Many, How soon
    2. Inventory and Merchandise
    3. Financial Impacts

View Now

 

Coronavirus/COVID-19: Communication Tools for Your Customers, Employees and Leadership Team

This live webinar (originally shown March 11, 2020 12:00 PM EST) will discuss what’s known about how the virus spreads and suggest what to say to the most important stakeholders in your business about its strategies for contending with the disease. Perspectives from an epidemiologist, industry human resources professional and TRSA.

View Now | Webinar Slides

 

 

Precautions for Protection: Handling Soiled Healthcare Linen

Provides route associates, soil sorters, loaders and other affected personnel with step-by-step process of properly applying Universal Precautions to prevent the spread of infections through safe handling of healthcare textiles throughout handing/transporting/processing/delivery.

View Now (English) | View Now (Spanish)

 

Reduce Anxiety by Addressing Workplace Needs and Building Meaningful Connection

We are now in the midst of a pandemic, and the impact of the coronavirus is increasingly being felt across the United States and the rest of the world. During this time, employees are under a tremendous amount of stress, both personally and professionally. For some, this stress is a result of the need to social distance, which can make people feel isolated and alone. For many in the laundry services industry, anxiety surrounding COVID-19 is a result continuing to venture into the workplace in order to carry out essential business. Regardless of the source, it is important to address your employee’s anxieties and ensure they feel supported and safe in the workplace during this period of uncertainty.

In this webinar, you will:

  • Learn the most common workplace needs and how they show up in our behavior
  • How to support employees to identify and discuss underlying needs
  • Reduce anxiety in employees/team members by fulfilling workplace needs in ways you are most comfortable, and help them fulfill their own needs

View Now

 

FMLA Act Update and Employee Communications: Keeping Team Members Connected and Thriving

During this complicated time, it is important for leadership to keep team members connected through communication. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed how our businesses operate and HR professionals are still developing best practices to keep businesses operating while maintaining a safe and healthy environment. This webinar, created in part by TRSA’s HR Committee, will address your coronavirus concerns. Also joining our HR committee on this session are two lawyers from Fisher & Phillips LLP who will provide an update on the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and offer legal advice to help you get through this complicated time.

Areas covered in this session:

  • If someone in your organization is diagnosed with COVID-19, what are your next steps?
  • How are companies generally keeping those laid off, engaged and connected?
  • Best practices for communication during periods of uncertainty
  • What PTO and vacation policies will look like after COVID-19
  • Implementing safety screenings (such as temperature checks) and social distancing plans in plants

View Now

 

Navigating Insurance and Claims During the COVID-19 Pandemic

As companies navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, they should take stock of existing insurance policies that may provide coverage for current loss of business. While this pandemic and the government response is unprecedented, your business may encounter several issues giving rise to a claim under one or more types of insurance policies. It is important to know where your business stands when navigating insurance during this period of change and uncertainty.

In this webinar, you will learn how to take steps to protect your business through:

  • Protecting Workers
  • Business Continuity Planning
  • Filing a Business Interruption Claim
  • Federal Emergency Paid Sick Leave
  • Federal Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act

View Now

 

North America: Economic Implications of COVID-19 and Demand Sector Outlooks

Join Global Economist Cailin Birch and EIU Consultant Vaibhav Sahgal as they discuss economic implications of COVID-19. As uncertainty about COVID-19 persists, financial markets around the world have staggered and there are signs that the true impact of the virus is moving from the financial markets to the global economy. Attendees will learn important information they can use in the coming months to help in their recovery from the impact of COVID-19.

The presentation will include the following:

  • Global and country-level COVID-19 macroeconomic implications/pain-points, and broad demand sector outlook for North American countries in scope (US and Canada; focus on demand sectors: construction; energy, oil and gas; healthcare; hotels; and manufacturing).
  • Qualitative insights linking linen supply and uniform rentals to the macroeconomic and demand sector outlook for North America.
  • Facilitated Q&A will follow the live presentation for attendees to submit your questions.

View Now

For Your Leadership Team

UPDATED 12:05 PM EST 5/11/2020

Procedures from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for protecting employees and controlling the spread in workplaces of the COVID-19 disease by the 2019-nCoV virus; guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO), TRSA and other international laundry experts on processing potentially contaminated items.

Employer and Laundry Guidance
New Coronavirus Relief Laws Require Paid Employee Leave
CDC Facility Safety Guidance (Members Only)

For Your Employees

UPDATED 12:05 PM EST 5/11/2020

Answers to commonly asked questions (Q&A) on risks and characteristics of the virus and personal strategies; from the CDC, illustrated personal practices (posters) to control the spread of the virus and instructions for handwashing and hand sanitizer use.

What to Know and Do Q&A (English) | What to Know and Do Q&A (Spanish)
Know the Symptoms (English) | Know the Symptoms (Spanish)
Stop the Spread of Germs (English) | Stop the Spread of Germs (Spanish)
Wash Your Hands the Right Way
How to Use Hand Sanitizer
Keep Calm and Wash Your Hands

For Your Customers

UPDATED 12:05 PM EST 5/11/2020

Description of our industry’s capabilities for combating the presence of COVID-19 on textiles, highlighting readiness to continue serving customers in a large-scale outbreak.

Prepared for COVID-19 (Members Only)

Frequently Asked Questions

UPDATED 12:05 PM EST 5/11/2020

Linen

1. With a 6-hour active life on linen, would leaving potentially contaminated soil in bag/cart for 6 hours eliminate potential employee exposure? Any update on how long COVID-19 lasts on linens?

COVID-19 is a NEW strand of coronavirus. The new strand is being studied by healthcare professionals worldwide. As new information becomes available, we will provide updates. All of the information that is currently being shared is based off of what healthcare professionals worldwide know about how previous strands of the virus have behaved on surfaces, linens, uniforms and other reusable textiles

The World Health Organization estimates the lifetime of the disease is between a few hours and a few days. According to the CDC, coronaviruses like COVID-19 can survive on surfaces anywhere from a few hours to a few days. it’s more likely to catch COVID-19 from person-to-person contact. While you can contract the virus from hard surfaces that are frequently touched, like doorknobs or railings, there have been NO reported cases of this happening. Washing your hands and increasing housekeeping with disinfection chemicals is the best means to protect you and our team. Standard hygienically clean laundering processes kill the COVID-19 virus, preventing it from infecting you or others. While research is still being done, we do know COVID-19 is mainly being spread via droplets emitted during coughing or sneezing. When dealing with hard surfaces, a simple disinfectant should suffice-the EPA has posted a list of cleaners that should be effective at sanitizing surfaces after exposure to COVID-19. While the CDC doesn’t specifically outline any changes to your typical laundry routine, they do provide a list of best practices when doing laundry for someone who’s ill:

  1. Ideally, wear disposable gloves and discard them after each use. When using reusable gloves, only use those gloves for cleaning and disinfecting surfaces infected with COVID-19—do not use them for any other household purpose. Wash your hands immediately after using the gloves. If you aren’t using gloves when handling dirty laundry, be sure to thoroughly wash your hands afterwards.
  2. Try to not shake the dirty laundry. Shaking the laundry carries a possibility of dispersing the virus through the air.
  3. If possible, use the warmest water setting on your washer and ensure items are dried completely afterwards.
  4. Dirty laundry from an ill person can be washed with other people’s items.
  5. If possible, consider placing a bag liner in your hamper that’s disposable or can be laundered. Otherwise, ensure the hamper itself is washed and sanitized.
  6. Additionally, consider having the clothes you wear around the house separated from clothes you’ve worn while you were outside to protect the environment inside your home.

2. Why doesn't TRSA advocate for incineration of linens?

TRSA does NOT advocate for the incineration of linens. TRSA recommends following CDC and OSHA guidelines for the handling of COVID-19 linens. The directive is to follow Standard and Universal Precautions. Please refer to our video,  Six Cs of Handling Soiled Linen in a Healthcare Environment, for guidance on handling soiled healthcare linen. We are closely following updates from the CDC, WHO and others. If this changes, we will certainly provide an update.

3. Once COVID-19 is attached to linens, can the virus actually get airborne? I am being told COVID-19 cannot detach (become airborne) from the linen.

People can catch COVID-19 from others who have the virus. The disease can spread from person to person through small droplets from the nose or mouth which are spread when a person with COVID-19 coughs or exhales. These droplets land on objects and surfaces around the person. Other people then catch COVID-19 by touching these objects or surfaces, then touching their eyes, nose or mouth. People can also catch COVID-19 if they breathe in droplets from a person with COVID-19 who coughs out or exhales droplets. This is why it is important to stay more than 1 meter (3 feet) away from a person who is sick. WHO is assessing ongoing research on the ways COVID-19 is spread and will continue to share updated findings.

According to OSHA regulations, handle contaminated textiles and fabrics with minimum agitation to avoid contamination of air, surfaces, and persons (36, 293, 355, 356). Category IC (OSHA: 29 CFR 1910.1030 § d.4.iv). Visit OSHA’s Hospital eTool on Laundry for more.

4. What are the thoughts about separating potentially contaminated linens at the hospitals and washing them separately?

While you should treat all linens as contaminated with the COVID-19 virus, using standard PPE, such as gloves and gowns, and bagging linens is enough to protect employees. These linens do not have to be washed separately. According to OSHA standards, normal laundry cycles should be used according to the washer and detergent manufacturer’s recommendations. Visit OSHA’s Hospital eTool on Laundry for more.

For the laundry industry, there are no recommended changes in normal laundry handling and processing of textiles from the CDC, as the current textile processing standard of appropriate time, temperature and chemical will kill the virus. For employee exposure risk on the sorting side, again the CDC has made no recommended changes in textile handling procedures at this time. Viruses usually do not live outside a live host for long periods, especially on porous surfaces like textiles, limiting the potential exposure risk to laundry personnel who will be handling the laundry hours or days after use.

5. Should we bag soiled hospitality linen?

Linen providers who support the healthcare market handle potentially infections materials daily. It’s always been understood that every piece of soiled linen be treated as if it were potentially infectious.

During this time, we suggest you consider taking similar precautions like those implemented by our teams that support the healthcare market.

Transmission based precautions are the second tier of basic infection control and are to be used with standard precautions (Proper Hand Hygiene, PPE, handle textile and laundry carefully, clean and disinfect environment surfaces, etc.).

6. What is the proper way for healthcare facilities to turn in linen containing COVID-19?

Existing OSHA regulations specify that any linen saturated with blood or other potentially infectious materials (OPIM) should be placed in impermeable bags. Learn more about what OSHA says about handling contaminated healthcare linen here.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

7. Any information or possible risk from contacting COVID-19 from laundry?

The CDC offers guidance for preventing the spread of COVID-19 in homes and residential communities that align with contacting COVID-19 from laundry. The CDC recommends that individuals wash laundry thoroughly. Immediately remove and wash clothes or bedding that have blood, stool, or body fluids on them. Wear disposable gloves while handling soiled items and keep soiled items away from your body. Clean your hands (with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer) immediately after removing your gloves. Read and follow directions on labels of laundry or clothing items and detergent. In general, using a normal laundry detergent according to washing machine instructions and dry thoroughly using the warmest temperatures recommended on the clothing label.

8. What are the differences between a surgical mask and an N95 mask and when should they be used?

A surgical mask is a loose-fitting, disposable device that creates a physical barrier between the mouth and nose of the wearer and potential contaminants in the immediate environment. These are often referred to as face masks, although not all face masks are regulated as surgical masks. Note that the edges of the mask are not designed to form a seal around the nose and mouth.

An N95 respirator mask is a respiratory protective device designed to achieve a very close facial fit and very efficient filtration of airborne particles. Note that the edges of the respirator are designed to form a seal around the nose and mouth. Surgical N95 Respirators are commonly used in healthcare settings and are a subset of N95 Filtering Facepiece Respirators (FFRs), often referred to as N95s.

The similarities among surgical masks and surgical N95s are:

  1. They are tested for fluid resistance, filtration efficiency (particulate filtration efficiency and bacterial filtration efficiency), flammability and biocompatibility.
  2. They should not be shared or reused.

Most N95 respirators are manufactured for use in construction and other industrial type jobs that expose workers to dust and small particles. They are regulated by the National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL) in the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

However, some N95 respirators are intended for use in a health care setting. Specifically, single-use, disposable respiratory protective devices used and worn by health care personnel during procedures to protect both the patient and health care personnel from the transfer of microorganisms, body fluids, and particulate material. These surgical N95 respirators are class II devices regulated by the FDA, under 21 CFR 878.4040, and CDC NIOSH under 42 CFR Part 84.

To learn more about N95 respirators and surgical masks, visit FDA.gov.

9. Are you recommending wearing a mask in soil department?

According to the World Health Organization, there is a world-wide shortage of masks. The recommendation is to use masks wisely. Only wear a mask if you are ill with COVID-19 symptoms (especially coughing) or looking after someone who may have COVID-19. Disposable face mask can only be used once. It is recommended but not required that workers handling soiled healthcare linen wear masks.

Please see Question #3 about how the virus is spread.

10. If COVID-19 can be transmitted via aerosol, should service reps entering medical facilities wear a mask?

We recommend social distancing for pickup and delivery. The WHO, CDD and TRSA are not recommending respirators (N95 masks) as they can cause more health damages than benefits. They tax the body more, making it more difficult to breath. Beyond a dust mask, you need to ensure that someone is fit to wear one. OSHA has certain requirements for these masks. According to the WHO, studies to date suggest that the virus that causes COVID-19 is mainly transmitted through contact with respiratory droplets rather than through the air.

Human Resources (HR)

11. Can you offer ideas about liberal sick day use while being able to effectively staff our plants?

Catalina Dongo, Director of Human Resources  for UniFirst Corporation, offers this advice:

“Essentially, we have relaxed our attendance policy so that no absences related to COVID-19 will be counted against the employee. We are giving employees the option in regard to pay replacement. They are able to select from their PTO banks such sick pay or vacation pay, or unpaid leave if none available or if they prefer. We anticipate there will be additional regulation issued by the States and/or the Federal Government that may provide for pay replacement.

The reality is that we expect a significant increase in absenteeism. We are working with our managers to implement flexible schedules. Meaning, some employees may not be able to come to work during the day because of school closures. However, they may be able to come in in the evening. Some managers are implementing second and third shifts in order to get the work done. Other employees have been willing to pick up extra hours, which also helps. We may have employees who experience reduced workloads due to customer closures. For example, sales reps. These employees should be invited to help in areas where we are experiencing high absenteeism.”

12. How should we handle employee travel? Should they or we take any particular precautions when they return?

This will continue to change based on travel restrictions. In general, crowded spaces should be avoided, such as a cruise. If tests are available, employees who traveled should be tested before returning to work. Until they can be tested, they should self-quarantine. In the TRSA COVID-19 Webinar, Catalina Dongo, Director of Human Resources at UniFirst Corperation, suggests that people should stay home if they have symptoms and to self-monitor and report before returning back to work.

According to the CDC CARE (Check And Record Everyday) Guide, you should take a temperature twice a day and be able to show it is below 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit .

13. Can I take an employee’s temperature at work to determine whether they might be infected?

Yes.

The EEOC confirmed that measuring employees’ body temperatures is permissible given the current circumstances. While the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) places restrictions on the inquiries that an employer can make into an employee’s medical status, and the EEOC considers taking an employee’s temperature to be a “medical examination” under the ADA, the federal agency recognizes the need for this action now because the CDC and state/local health authorities have acknowledged community spread of COVID-19 and issued attendant precautions.

14. Can we ask an employee to stay home or leave work if they exhibit symptoms of COVID-19 or the flu?

Yes, you are permitted to ask them to seek medical attention and get tested for COVID-19.

The CDC states that employees who exhibit symptoms of influenza-like illness at work during a pandemic should leave the workplace. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) confirmed that advising workers to go home is permissible and not considered disability-related if the symptoms present are akin to the COVID-19 or the flu.

Visit the Fisher & Phillips LLC COVID-19 page for more information.

15. An employee of ours has tested positive for COVID-19. What should we do?

You should send home all employees who worked closely with that employee to ensure the infection does not spread. Before the infected employee departs, ask them to identify all individuals who worked in close proximity (within six feet) for a prolonged period of time (more than a few minutes) with them in the previous 14 days to ensure you have a full list of those who should be sent home. When sending the employees home, do not identify by name the infected employee or you could risk a violation of confidentiality laws. If you work in a shared office building or area, you should inform building management so they can take whatever precautions they deem necessary. The CDC provides that the employees who worked closely to the infected worker “should then self-monitor for symptoms (i.e., fever, cough, or shortness of breath).”

How long should the employees who worked near the employee stay at home? Those employees should first consult and follow the advice of their healthcare providers or public health department regarding the length of time to stay at home. If those resources are not available, the employee should at least remain at home for three days without a fever (achieved without medication) if they don’t develop any other symptoms. If they develop symptoms, they should remain home for at least seven days from the initial onset of the symptoms, and three days without a fever (achieved without medication).

The CDC also provides the following recommendations for most non-healthcare businesses that have suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases:

  • It is recommended to close off areas used by the ill persons and wait as long as practical before beginning cleaning and disinfection to minimize potential for exposure to respiratory droplets. Open outside doors and windows to increase air circulation in the area. If possible, wait up to 24 hours before beginning cleaning and disinfection.
  • Cleaning staff should clean and disinfect all areas (e.g., offices, bathrooms, and common areas) used by the ill persons, focusing especially on frequently touched surfaces.
  • To clean and disinfect:
    • If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaned using a detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection (Note: “cleaning” will remove some germs, but “disinfection” is also necessary).
    • For disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants should be effective.
    • Diluted household bleach solutions can be used if appropriate for the surface. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation. Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
    • Cleaning staff should wear disposable gloves and gowns for all tasks in the cleaning process, including handling trash.
    • Gloves and gowns should be compatible with the disinfectant products being used.
    • Additional PPE might be required based on the cleaning/disinfectant products being used and whether there is a risk of splash. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding other protective measures recommended on the product labeling.
    • Gloves and gowns should be removed carefully to avoid contamination of the wearer and the surrounding area. Be sure to clean hands after removing gloves.
    • Employers should develop policies for worker protection and provide training to all cleaning staff on site prior to providing cleaning tasks. Training should include when to use PPE, what PPE is necessary, how to properly don (put on), use, and doff (take off) PPE, and how to properly dispose of PPE.
    • If you require gloves or masks or other PPE, prepare a simple half-page Job Safety Analysis (JSA): list the hazards and the PPE (gloves, masks, etc., as needed), and the person who drafts the JSA should sign and date it.

If employers are using cleaners other than household cleaners with more frequency than an employee would use at home, employers must also ensure workers are trained on the hazards of the cleaning chemicals used in the workplace and maintain a written program in accordance with OSHA’s Hazard Communication standard (29 CFR 1910.1200). Simply download the manufacturer’s Safety Data Sheet (SDS) and share with employees as needed, and make sure the cleaners used are on your list of workplace chemicals used as part of the Hazard Communication Program (which almost all employers maintain).

Visit the Fisher & Phillips LLC COVID-19 page for more information.

16. One of our employees has a suspected but unconfirmed case of COVID-19. What should we do?

Take the same precautions as noted in Question #16.

Treat the situation as if the suspected case is a confirmed case for purposes of sending home potentially infected employees. Communicate with your affected workers to let them know that the employee has not tested positive for the virus but has been exhibiting symptoms that lead you to believe a positive diagnosis is possible.

Visit the Fisher & Phillips LLC COVID-19 page for more information.

17. If one of your workers tests positive for COVID-19, do you have to quarantine the whole plant?

No, you do not have to quarantine the entire plant.

The CDC offers guidelines on the cleaning and disinfection for community facilities and recommends that you should close off all areas visited by ill persons, open outside doors and windows and use ventilating fans to increase air circulation in the area. Wait 24 hours before beginning cleaning and disinfection. Once you are ready to disinfect, cleaning staffs should clean and disinfect all areas such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electric equipment such as tablets, touch screens, keyboards, remote controls, and ATM machines used by the ill persons, focusing especially on frequently touched surfaces. See information above for advice on how to disinfect surfaces.

18. How do you maintain social distancing on the production floor?

Operators on our Healthcare Market Sector Call suggested:

  • Splitting into shifts so that only have the workforce is in at a time
  • Stagger start and end times so that not everyone comes in at once.
  • Set break times and limit the amount of seating available so that people maintain the 6’ while on break
  • Designate an outdoor break area so that people get the fresh air and are able to more easily maintain 6’
  • Change into workplace clothes AT WORK instead of bringing them home – limits exposure
  • Mark the 6’ on the production floors with tape such as by the washers, dryers, and folders so that employees can easily see the 6’
    • Some grocery stores have already done this at the checkout lines with bright neon duct tape
  • Avoid job rotation

For additional information, visit this article on social distancing in the workplace. WIPFLI, a business consulting firm, also offers this article on how to keep production running in your plant.

19. What is the right measurement for social distancing? 6' or 3'?

The CDC recommends 6’ for social distancing as that is past how far respiratory droplets from coughs and sneezes can travel in the air. The droplets can spread anywhere between 3’ to 5’, maintaining the 6’ diminishes the chance of spreading.

20. Does TRSA have a sample policy for temperature checking due to coronavirus?

On April 8, 2020, the TRSA HR Committee helped put together the webinar FMLA Act Update and Employee Communications: Keeping Team Members Connected and Thriving and the HR professionals who spoke on this webinar provided resources regarding the process for checking employees temperatures in the plant. Please see the documents below. This information is brought to you by HR professionals at Unifirst, Paris Companies, and Spindle. There is also a document on talking points from the law firm Fisher & Phillips LLC. For more information, you can find this webinar in our On Demand Learning center under COVID-19 and above in the Education and Training section of this page.

Employee Health and Temperature Screening Template
UniFirst Daily Team Partner Screening
UniFirst Coronavirus Self-Screening
UniFirst HR COVID-19 Presumptive or Positive Case Intake
Paris Cos. On The Frontline
Fisher & Phillips LLC Taking Employees’ Temperatures

Disinfection

21. Do you have a truck or vehicle cleaning and disinfection checklist?

All Hygienically Clean Certified Facilities MUST follow the transportation guidelines for their specific segments. You may find these recommendations on the HygienicallyClean.org under the market-specific certifications standards.

Below is the recommendation for Healthcare under section 5.1.3.4. Transportation:

  • The QA manual must describe in detail procedures for the following functions:
    • The process for servicing accounts must be designed and executed to prevent cross-contamination.
    • Service reps must be trained on pick-up/delivery.
    • Items must be covered during transportation to prevent cross-contamination.
    • Items shall be transported in designated and covered containers.
    • Service trucks shall be cleaned on a regular basis to minimize infection and contamination.
    • Trucks shall be swept out daily and decontaminated at least twice a month.
    • Reusable cart covers must be cleaned after every use.
    • Proper PPE and gloves must be worn at all times when handling soiled linen.
    • All linen retrieved from a customer location and delivered to the soiled processing area must be cleaned prior to delivery to the customer.All clean and unused linen retrieved from a customer that maintains proper functional separation and is delivered to the clean processing area may be used for redelivery to the customer. Prior to redelivery, the linen must be rotated and restocked.
    • A designated transition area with stated process controls must be identified to remove potentially soiled cart covers prior to delivering exchange carts to the clean processing area1
Virus

22. What outside weather temperature will start killing the bacteria? Will the cold weather kill the COVID-19? The news said that the warm weather kills it.

A study published in The Journal of Hospital Infection analyzed several dozen previously published papers on human coronaviruses (other than the new coronavirus, COVID-19) to get a better idea of how long they can survive outside of the body. They concluded that if COVID-19 resembles other human coronaviruses, such as its “cousins” that cause SARS and MERS, it can stay on surfaces — such as metal, glass or plastic — for as long as nine days. In comparison, flu viruses can last on surfaces for only about 48 hours. But some of them don’t remain active for as long at temperatures higher than 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius). The authors also found that these coronaviruses can be effectively wiped away by household disinfectants.

Learn more about how long COVID-19 will last on surfaces and how to clean those surfaces here.

23. How long can COVID-19 last on surfaces?

According to NIH, it may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but there have been no documented cases of the patients catching the virus from touching surfaces and it is NOT the primary source of the spread of the virus. The virus is spread from person-to-person which is why emphasis has been on social distancing and quarantining. Visit here for the National Institute of Health’s information on how COVID-19 spreads.

According to the CDC, coronaviruses like COVID-19 can survive on surfaces anywhere from a few hours to a few days. While it’s more likely to catch COVID-19 from person to person contact and from hard surfaces that are frequently touched, like door knobs or railings, washing your laundry can help clean away COVID-19, preventing it from infecting you or others.

A new analysis found that COVID-19 can remain viable in the air for up to 3 hours, on copper for up to 4 hours, on cardboard up to 24 hours and on plastic and stainless steel up to 72 hours. This study, Aerosol and Surface Stability of SARS-CoV-2 as Compared with SARS-CoV-1, was originally published in the preprint database medRxiv on March 11, and a revised version was published March 17 in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Additional studies and articles about how long COVID-19 can last on surfaces can be found at The Journal of Hospital Infection and Reviewed.com.

Industry Issues

24. How do we get the suppliers and supply chain serving the laundries, also deemed "essential"?

There are many interpretations with several states including California, Florida, Kentucky, Nevada and Pennsylvania have specifically provided guidance confirming commercial laundries as ‘essential services’ with New York and New Jersey allowing laundry operations as ‘necessary to ensure the safety, sanitation and operations of essential services.’ TRSA is working on Illinois and others that are closing or considering closing, while also assuming they are all closing. TRSA is working with contacts and consultants to get letters to all state governors and other state/federal agencies. If you are a supplier for services that are deemed a “Life Saving Business,” you should be covered in the same states and municipalities that recognize linen, uniform and facility services as lifesaving or essential.

Facility Support Services under the larger Professional and Business Services heading. Looking at the NAICS Code for Facilities Support Services, the linen, uniform and facility services industry clearly falls into that category.

  • NAICS Code 561210 – Facilities Support Services: Establishments in this industry typically provide a combination of services, such as janitorial, maintenance, trash disposal, guard and security, mail routing, reception, laundry, and related services to support operations within facilities.
COVID-19 Media & In the News

UPDATED 2:01 PM EST 7/22/2020

TRSA News & Media Releases

NOVO Acknowledged for Barrier Gown Pivot, May 29, 2020

NOVO Acknowledged for Barrier Gown Pivot, May 29, 2020

Business Pulse: Operators Weigh in on Loans, Industry Messaging, May 29, 2020

Economic Outlook: North America in the Wake of COVID-19, May 29, 2020

F&B Victory – FDA Adds Linens to Restaurant Guidance, May 28, 2020

CDC Releases Reopening Guidance – Reusable F&B Linens Included, May 20, 2020

Business Pulse: Suppliers Seek Financial Aid, May 8, 2020

NOVO Featured on Local News Broadcast, May 8, 2020

NOVO Featured on Local News Broadcast, May 8, 2020

SBA Offers Additional Guidance for PPP Loans, May 6, 2020

Weekly Update – Revive Restaurants with Reusables, May 1, 2020

Webinar Recap: Restart … a Return to Business, May 1, 2020

TRSA Urges U.S. Governors to Strengthen Restaurant Safety – Operators Need to Mobilize!, April 28, 2020

North Texas Health Care Highlighted on Local News, April 24, 2020

North Texas Health Care Highlighted on Local News, April 24, 2020

TRSA Weekly Update – Focus on Resources, Reopening, April 24, 2020

First-Responder Garments – Emerging Growth Opportunity?, April 24, 2020

TRSA Briefs Office of VP Pence on the Importance of Reusable HCTs, April 17, 2020

Business Pulse Update: Industrial Operators Show Signs of Optimism, April 17, 2020

CDC Releases Guidance on Isolation Gowns, April 17, 2020

Local TV Highlights Century Linen’s Work for Hospitals, April 17, 2020

Local TV Highlights Century Linen’s Work for Hospitals, April 17, 2020

Business Pulse: Suppliers Report Delays, Cancellations in Orders, April 10, 2020

Hygienically Clean: Expedited Certifications Available Now!, April 10, 2020

Healthcare & COVID-19: Dispatches from the Front Lines, April 10, 2020

Webinar Provides FMLA Act Updates Under COVID-19, April 10, 2020

Healthcare, Industrial Operators: New World Challenges, April 10, 2020

VP Pence Recognizes Reusable Medical Garments Amid COVID-19 Crisis, April 10, 2020

Webinar: Negotiating Insurance Claims During the COVID-19 Pandemic, April 10, 2020

Operation Recovery: TRSA Launches Sector-Based Task Forces, April 10, 2020

TRSA Reports: Textile Industry Focusing on Medical Garments Amid COVID-19 Pandemic, April 9, 2020

Business Pulse: Initial Survey Shows Hard Hits to Hospitality, F&B Sectors, April 3, 2020

TRSA Draws 500+ for Facilitated Virtual Market Sector Information-Sharing; Launches Market Business Recovery Task Forces, March 30, 2020

TRSA Gets Laundry Services Listed by DHS, March 30, 2020

TRSA Board Recognizes Contributions of Industry Suppliers/Vendors, March 27, 2020

‘We’re in this Together’: Industrial Operators Unite Amid COVID-19 Crisis, March 27, 2020

‘Calm Before the Storm’: Healthcare Operators Share Best Practices, March 27, 2020

COVID-19 – A Business Survival Guide, March 20, 2020

Baird Survey: Sunny Industry Outlook Misses COVID-19 Clouds, March 13, 2020

 

TRSA in the News

Laundry X COVID-19, Clean Middle East, May 12, 2020

Reopening Restaurant Owners Call Kentucky’s Ban On Table Linens ‘Wasteful’USA Today, May 22, 2020

TRSA Releases Guidelines for Cleaning and Handling Hotel LinensLodging Magazine, May 19, 2020

Hotels Urged to Clean Linens Daily, Handle with Extra PrecautionsGreen Lodging News, May 19, 2020

Coronavirus In Texas: Massive Laundry Operation Helping Keep Frontline Health Care Workers Safe, CBS 11 News, April 20, 2020

TRSA Reports: Textile Industry Focusing on Medical Garments Amid COVID-19 Pandemic, Physician Family Media, April 8, 2020

US Linen, Uniform, Facility Services Industry Wants Relief, Fibre2Fashion, March 23, 2020

TRSA Cautions Leaders Not to Shut Down Industries Vital to the Fight Against COVID-19 and the Nation’s Food Supply, Yahoo! Finance, March 20, 2020

Linen and Uniform Services Recognized as Essential Services in Battle with COVID-19, American Cleaning and Hygiene, March 19, 2020

Additional Resources

UPDATED 12:50 PM EST 5/21/2020

Consult these organizations’ sites for alerts related to COVID-19.

World Health Organization (WHO)

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Pandemic
Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Advice for the Public
Q&As on COVID-19

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Reopening Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfecting Public Spaces, Workplaces, Businesses, Schools, and Homes
Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of Isolation Gowns
Interim Guidance for Implementing Safety Practices for Critical Infrastructure Workers Who May Have Had Exposure to a Person with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19
CDC Reopening Guidance

U.S. Department of Labor

Coronavirus Resources

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

State-by-State Business Reopening Guidance

U.S. Small Business Administration

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources

U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

FDA Restaurant Reopening Checklist

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

COVID-19
Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19
Prevent Worker Exposure to Coronavirus (COVID-19) (English)| Prevent Worker Exposure to Coronavirus (COVID-19) (Spanish)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

John Hopkins University

Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases by Johns Hopkins CSSE (Desktop)
Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases by Johns Hopkins CSSE (Mobile)

National Association of Manufacturers

State COVID Operations Snapshot

Fisher Phillips (TRSA Legal Business Solutions Partner)

State-by-State COVID-19 Issues to Consider for the Private Sector
COVID-19 Legal Alerts & Guidance
COVID-19 Data Bank (Templates & Forms)

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