The times have gotten crazy, haven’t they? COVID-19 has hit our shores with vengeance and it is turning lives upside down in many ways. Not only are people’s personal lives being touched by this horrible virus, but also the business sector is being heavily impacted.
What Canadians need is a glimmer of hope in these dark times. Our governments are doing everything in their power to help businesses and Canadians stay afloat in these unstable times. Could the government be doing more and at a quicker rate? Maybe.
But these are unprecedented times that are calling for unprecedented measures unlike anything Canada has ever seen before and we need to be patient while complying with our governments and top health officials’ advice to self-isolate and social distance to help flatten the curve.
At BRIKS Design-Build Group, we are doing our part to help fight COVID-19. While our daily business operations may be slower and more calculated due to government restrictions and regulations for the virus, we are still making it our mission to provide our clients and the general public with informative content about the industry.
In this blog by BRIKS Design-Build Group, we take a different approach to previous blog content on this site. Continue reading to find out more information about the COVID-19 virus and what BRIKS Design-Build Group is doing to keep our employees on the job site and the public safe.
What is COVID-19?
In January 2020, a novel (new) coronavirus (COVID-19) was identified as the cause of an outbreak of pneumonia originating in Wuhan, China.
The situation is rapidly evolving and Public Health Ontario, along with the Ministry of Health, is closely monitoring the outbreak, conducting surveillance and appropriate laboratory testing, and providing public health and infection control guidance. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that originate in animals but are known to cause respiratory illness in humans, particularly during the fall and winter months.
Other novel coronaviruses have included Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV). Human coronaviruses are common and are typically associated with mild illnesses, similar to the common cold. COVID-19 is a new disease that has not been previously identified in humans.
Rarely, animal coronaviruses can infect people, and more rarely, these can then spread from person to person through close contact.
How are COVID-19 symptoms detected?
There are laboratory tests that can identify the virus that causes COVID-19 in respiratory specimens. Provincial and local public health departments have received tests from CDC while medical providers are getting tests developed by commercial manufacturers.
All of these tests are Real-Time Reverse Transcriptase (RT)-PCR Diagnostic Panels, which can provide results in 4 to 6 hours. Not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19. Here is some information that might help in making decisions about seeking care or testing.
- Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home.
- There is no treatment specifically approved for this virus.
- Testing results may be helpful to inform decision-making about who you come in contact with.
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and want to get tested, try calling your provincial or local health department or a medical provider. While supplies of these tests are increasing, it may still be difficult to find a place to get tested.
How to deal with COVID-19 if you have tested positive?
It is important to know what to do if you think you have come into contact with someone who has COVID-19 or you have tested positive for the virus. The whole idea is to limit the spread of the infection. You can do that by following these guidelines provided by the CDC:
Stay home except to get medical care if needed:
Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and are able to recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your home, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you have trouble breathing, or have any other emergency warning signs, or if you think it is an emergency.
Separate yourself from people in your household:
As much as possible, you stay away from others. You should stay in a specific “sick room” if possible, and away from other people in your home. Use a separate bathroom, if available.
Wear a facemask if you are sick:
You should wear a facemask, if available, when you are around other people (including before you enter a healthcare provider’s office). If the person who is sick is not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then as their caregiver, you should wear a facemask when in the same room with them.
Clean your hands often:
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. This is especially important after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.
Monitor your symptoms:
Common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever and cough. Trouble breathing is a more serious symptom that means you should get medical attention. If you are having trouble breathing, seek medical attention, but call first. Call your doctor or emergency room before going in and tell them your symptoms. They will tell you what to do.
What is BRIKS Design-Build Group doing to help flatten the curve?
The COVID-19 pandemic and its attendant effect on markets and commercial activity will likely present a range of challenges to the construction industry, challenges that could deepen depending on the severity and length of the crisis in Ontario, Canada, and globally.
However, one thing’s for certain, and that is BRIKS Design-Build Group is staying totally compliant with government regulations and restrictions during this COVID-19 outbreak. Currently deemed as an essential business, the BRIKS Design-Build Group is staying vigilant in the way that we protect our team and our clients in the following ways:
- Hand washing and sterilization has been increased substantially on job sites.
- Symptoms are closely monitored by all managing staff and foreman on the job sites.
- Social distancing everywhere on the job sites has been implemented.
- Office staff have been deployed to work from home indefinitely and are in constant contact via video conference platforms.
The BRIKS Design-Build Group will continue to comply with provincial and local government regulations as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to unfold. It is our understanding that government regulations will continue to increase which could end up putting a temporary halt on business operations entirely. We will do everything in our power to keep our clients and our team informed on further actions.
We are all in this together as Team Canada! Let’s all do our part to flatten the curve and beat COVID-19. Be safe and stay well.