18 May 2020 ,  London

WORKSAFE steps for Organisations to Protect Their People and Avoid the Legal Consequences of Getting it Wrong

As the return to the ‘new normal’ workplace starts to become the focus for many organisations as lockdown measures relax, International SOS urges businesses to make sure that the return is safe and sustainable. In many locations, it is also becoming evident that court cases may ensue if businesses do not implement the correct mitigation measures.
Dr Mark Parrish, Regional Medical Director, Northern Europe at International SOS comments, “Businesses are facing unprecedented challenges on multiple fronts. As part of ensuring the sustainability of operations, organisations must protect the safety and wellbeing of their employees throughout the return to work. Anything less could result in a backwards step in the successful return to operations, in the fight against COVID-19 and could even result in prosecutions.”

Dr Mark continues, “While no business can guarantee preventing the spread of infection, vital precautionary steps will minimise risks, fulfil duty of care responsibilities and promote workforce resilience. Whatever the circumstances, whether an office, a factory, a retail outlet or even out on an oil rig, preparation and ongoing actionable insights drawing from the most up to date information are a must to detect threats, mitigate risks and provide swift treatment if needed. Taking into account governmental guidelines and assessing what is necessary for a particular workforce, both from a logistical perspective and personal one, to return safely will take great measures for many businesses. It will be the organisations that implement the correct measures which will have the greatest chance of success in return to operations.”

International SOS highlights eight steps for returning to WORKSAFE operations:

Workspace environment: consider screening, zoning, barriers, cleaning protocols, ventilation, access, and the provision of PPE & IT equipment where needed.
Operations: isolation, essential hygiene, health and medical measures; health questionnaires and providing physical and mental health support.
Regulations: policies monitored, in line with Government regulations and ensuring medical needs are fully covered including Occupational Health and Safety and travel.
Knowledge: understanding of the latest quarantine and transport requirements and medical certificates. Ability to do contact tracing and quarantining in a timely manner. Privacy considerations are also a must.
Social distancing; limiting numbers to the workplace, space planning, staggering working hours and days, including A/B team shifts, continued flexible and remote working.
Alert: setup automated methods to be alerted to emerging threats: new local clusters, second waves, and changing security risks e.g. civil unrest
Fortify: establish partnerships with apolitical infectious disease experts, providing accurate and timely advice
Empowering employees: communication and training is key to deliver new workplace arrangements and policies. Engaging leadership and role modelling are critical. Effective complaint practices.

The details of this will be presented at a webinar: Returning to the Workplace – Key Issues for Employers and Dealing with the New Normal. To register, click here.

For up to date information on COVID-19, click here.


Notes to Editors

About the International SOS Group of Companies

The International SOS Group of Companies is in the business of saving lives, protecting your global workforce from health and security threats. Wherever you are, we deliver customised health, security risk management and wellbeing solutions to fuel your growth and productivity. In the event of extreme weather, an epidemic or a security incident, we provide an immediate response providing peace of mind. Our innovative technology and medical and security expertise focus on prevention, offering real-time, actionable insights and on-the-ground quality delivery. We help protect your people, your organisation's reputation, as well as support your compliance reporting needs. By partnering with us, organisations can fulfil their Duty of Care responsibilities, while empowering business resilience, continuity and sustainability.


Founded in 1985, the International SOS Group, headquartered in London & Singapore, is trusted by 12,000 organisations, including the majority of the Fortune 500, as well as mid-size enterprises, governments, educational institutions and NGOs. 12,000 multicultural medical, security and logistics experts stand with you to provide support & assistance from over 1,000 locations in 90 countries, 24/7, 365 days.   

To protect your workforce, we are at your fingertips: