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COVID-19 Pandemic: Prevention and Protection Measures to Be Adopted at the Workplace

1
Department of Health Promotion, Mother and Child Care, Internal Medicine and Medical Specialties “Giuseppe D’Alessandro”, University of Palermo, 90127 Palermo, Italy
2
Occupational Medicine, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine University of Catania Italy, 95131 Catania, Italy
3
Department of Orthopedics, Hospital Company “Ospedali Riuniti Villa Sofia-Cervello” Palermo Italy, 90146 Palermo, Italy
4
Faculty of Economics within Dimitrie Cantemir University of Targu Mures, 540680 Targu Mures, Romania
5
Department of Microbiology A Syggros University Hospital Athens Greece, 10552 Athens, Greece
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(9), 3603; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12093603
Received: 9 April 2020 / Revised: 24 April 2020 / Accepted: 27 April 2020 / Published: 29 April 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Working during the COVID-19 Global Pandemic)
SARS-CoV-2, identified in Wuhan, China, for the first time in December 2019, is a new viral strain, which has not been previously identified in humans; it can be transmitted both by air and via direct and indirect contact; however, the most frequent way it spreads is via droplets. Like the other viruses belonging to the same family of coronaviruses, it can cause from mild flu-like symptoms, such as cold, sore throat, cough and fever, to more severe ones such as pneumonia and breathing difficulties, and it can even lead to death. Since no effective specific drug therapy has been found yet, nor any vaccine capable of limiting the spread of this pathogen, it is important for ways of preventing the spread of this infection to be established. The purpose of our research was to provide a protocol to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2 infection in light of the limited information related to this coronavirus. In detail, we analysed and searched targeted evidence-based guidelines issued in the various countries affected by this epidemic up till now. In addition, we analyzed the recommendations for the prevention and control of other epidemics caused by other pathogens belonging to the same family of coronaviruses or others that present the same mechanisms of transmission. General organizational measures regarding the containment and management of the epidemiological emergency of COVID-19 have been imposed by the competent authorities for an adequate and proportionate management of the evolution of the epidemiological situation. The prevention and protection organizational measures therefore aim to minimize the probability of being exposed to SARS-CoV-2. For this purpose, measures must also be taken at work to avoid new infections or even the spread of the virus where it has already been present. Furthermore, environmental measures are aimed at reducing the risk of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 to individuals through contact with infected subjects, objects, equipment, or contaminated environmental surfaces. Protective devices must be used whenever there is potentially close contact with a suspect case, especially when the potentially infected person does not wear a surgical mask that could reduce the spread of viruses in the environment. By adopting this specific prevention and protection measures recommended in the workplace, it will be possible to help overcome this COVID-19 pandemic. View Full-Text
Keywords: organizational measures; environmental measures; pandemic; infection; work; occupational medicine; coronavirus; SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; protection; prevention; protocol; PPE; DPI; mask; gloves; stress; competitive sport; fatigue; droplets; inanimate surface; transmission; aerosol organizational measures; environmental measures; pandemic; infection; work; occupational medicine; coronavirus; SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; protection; prevention; protocol; PPE; DPI; mask; gloves; stress; competitive sport; fatigue; droplets; inanimate surface; transmission; aerosol
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Cirrincione, L.; Plescia, F.; Ledda, C.; Rapisarda, V.; Martorana, D.; Moldovan, R.E.; Theodoridou, K.; Cannizzaro, E. COVID-19 Pandemic: Prevention and Protection Measures to Be Adopted at the Workplace. Sustainability 2020, 12, 3603.

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