Flu season can be a particularly hard time of the year for our friends. While we continue to offer free laundry, warm showers and great conversation out on shift, we wanted to take the opportunity to keep you informed with recommended preventions you can take to protect yourself this flu season.

These suggestions are useful to help limit the spread of germs found in the common cold, flu and widely publicised Covid-19 (Coronavirus) currently in the headlines. We don’t want to create alarm, rather we want to ensure that you – our volunteers – are kept informed and can make sensible decisions around your health this flu season.

While we intend for our services to continue operating, if you do feel sick please stay at home and inform your Team Leader. Resting up and consulting your GP is advised.

Tips to help limit the spread of germs

• Remember to wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds prior to commencing work or volunteering, after sneezing and coughing, going to the bathroom, or after touching objects that may have been in contact with people exhibiting flu-like symptoms;

• Use hand sanitiser available on shift;

• Wear gloves while on shift and handling any washing or cleaning items.

• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick;

• If you feel sick, please stay at home, rest up and visit your GP;

• Know the signs of a flu – fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath; and
Be mindful of physical contact with people displaying flu-like symptoms – consider replacing handshakes with the Orange Sky approved fist bump!

• If you have been in, departed from, or transited through mainland China, Iran or South Korea in the last 14 days, you should:
Self isolate yourself from others for 14 days from the day you departed China, Iran or South Korea. Feel free to roster yourself back on shift at the conclusion of your 14-day self-isolation period; and
Monitor yourself for symptoms.

For further, specific information on Coronavirus, please read through the link below from the Ministry of Health’s website. You can also phone Healthline’s dedicated COVID-19 number on 0800 358 5453 for any other guidance as well.

Stay safe this flu season, please do not panic, look out for yourselves and each other and if you have any questions, please contact your Service or Team Leader for guidance and advice.