By Vanessa Eddy
Falls Church, like many other cities in Virginia and across the United States, is in a re-opening phase. Covid-19 has affected all of us and has changed the world as we know it. It is requiring all of us in Falls Church, as well as the rest of the world, to adapt to the “new normal”. Sifting through the misinformation surrounding Covid-19 adds unnecessary stress to businesses and consumers. As many businesses strive to prioritize the health of their employees and customers, they have already started following CDC recommendations such as wearing masks, separating tables, spacing out goods, social distancing, and teleworking. These steps are great; however, these general, overarching recommendations are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to keeping both employees and customers safe. We as the Falls Church community can take other practical and simple steps to help protect our community and keep our businesses in business!
BioPrep Solutions has partnered with the Falls Church Chamber of Commerce to help businesses navigate reopening, ensuring Falls Church businesses stay in business. BioPrep Solutions was founded by public health professionals with over 40 years of biodefense, epidemiology, and infection control experience at the local, state and federal levels. BioPrep strives to make Public Health public, by providing access to experts who can relay scientifically valid information into an easy-to-understand format. BioPrep believes education is essential to ensuring businesses are able to safely reopen for their employees and their customers. BioPrep, in collaboration with seasoned business professionals and education experts, has designed the Healthy Business Pledge.
The Healthy Business Pledge has been designed to 1) Educate, 2) Train, 3) Mitigate, and 4) Support. This course had been designed using the constructivism learning science research- based teaching practice which allows BioPrep experts to incorporate multiple engagement points to meet each learner where they are. Since the course is digital, BioPrep experts update the course in real time both with current, fact based information and continual improvements to the course design. The course also helps increase citizens’ basic science- and health- literacy.
Included with this pledge is an interactive 45 minute online course, certificate of completion, storefront Covid-19 signs, and the blue and yellow checkmark window decal to highlight to customers and all of Falls Church that businesses have completed the Healthy Business Pledge. This checkmark denotes businesses that have taken an extra effort to pursue training related to preventing the spread of Covid-19 and to upholding local laws and regulations. Customers and businesses alike will come to recognize and trust the Healthy Business Pledge checkmark! The Healthy Business Pledge is available to Falls Church businesses for free, compliments of F.C..’s Chamber of Commerce.
Now more than ever, it is critical that fact-based, scientifically-proven information is at the core of reopening plans and protocols. However, public health and biological concepts are difficult to understand and are equally challenging to manifest in company-wide practices. This is why BioPrep has created not only the Healthy Business Pledge, but also in-depth, industry-specific Professional Learning Programs that deliver detailed information about Covid-19, public health measures, and cleaning and disinfecting procedures for employees of all backgrounds. These industry-specific programs take a deep dive into specific industries and provide recommendations that are unique to these industries’ settings, needs and operations.
Businesses that participate in these deep dive trainings can also choose to take BioPrep’s Healthy Business Pledge, promising to take the information and recommendations into consideration when reopening. BioPrep appreciates each business’s input and unique needs, and believes that employees must have a say when navigating public health threats. When businesses play a role in creating their own action plan, they are more likely to adhere to protocols because their specific goals and needs are accounted for. BioPrep collaborates and partners with businesses by providing expert guidance through Custom Standard Operating Procedures, Storefront Evaluations, and Monitoring and Compliance Services — all offerings which transform public health concepts into understandable plans and concrete practices.
It is essential for our economy that we all support local businesses again. We will be much more comfortable doing so knowing that business leaders are staying informed to ensure they act in accordance with state and local regulations and know that the information they receive is scientifically valid, appropriate, and vetted. These measures will facilitate the re-opening process, improve business efficiencies, and provide businesses with the tools and education to help prevent coronavirus outbreaks. Understanding the proper protocols and procedures to reopen a business will not only protect employees and customers against public health threats, but will also ease anxieties about returning to work, make your business stand out as a community leader, and incentivize other businesses to take necessary precautions. Let’s work together to keep Falls Church as safe as possible.
Vanessa Eddy is the co-founder of BioPrep Solutions