How to Stay Safe as an Essential Worker During a Pandemic

Female doctor with mask on holding a globeDo you know the saying “don’t bring your work home with you”? Well, it is a healthy way for you to remember that you should keep work disconnected from your personal life. 

While it has been traditionally used to make sure that you take a break once in a while, it has definitely taken a new meaning during the pandemic. Essential workers who are required to continue working during the coronavirus outbreak need to take extra precautions to ensure that their work does not affect their personal life, especially their health. 

Essential workers are at an increased risk of getting infected with COVID whenever they come into work. They also risk-taking the virus back home to their families after each day. It is a concern that can increase the stress you may already have because of the pandemic. There are employees like doctors, nurses, delivery persons, grocery store workers and more that are at increased risk of infection. 

This is why it is so important for all first responders ensure they are taking extra precautions to secure their safety. With that said, if you are one of these heroes, you may find the following tips helpful. 

While at Work 

Man working on computer wearing a maskHere are some tips that can help you stay safer while you are at work. 

  • Keep personal items separate from your workstation. Items like your rings or cell phones should be kept in the break room, locker or office. This will decrease the chance of any of such items being contaminated. Before you use any of these items again, make sure that your hands are properly washed and sanitized. You should also sanitize these items at least once every day.
  • Clean Your Work Area

    Don’t take for granted that the cleaning staff that comes in at night did a thorough job of disinfecting your office, specifically your desk and the items on it. Clean it yourself. Use anti-bacterial wipes or put soap and water on a cloth and wipe down the areas you use most, even places you may just rest your arms or hands.

  • Check Your Inner Feelings

    As a first responder, especially if you are in the healthcare industry, it can feel quite overwhelming. Pause for a moment or two to recollect can be important. Keeping a straight and clear mind will make sure that you don’t make any mistakes that can lead to you getting infected.

  • Maintaining Social Distancing

    While it can be hard to maintain a good six feet away from everyone at all times, you should still do your best to try to do just that. If you are working in an indoor space, such as a grocery store, it can increase the risk even more. This is why you may want to talk with your employer to make sure that not too many people enter the store at a time so that there isn’t crowding in the aisles.

  • Wash and Sanitize Your Hands Frequently

Illustration of human hands facing up
The more frequent you wash your hands, the less likely you are to contract the disease (Photo: Tim mossholder)

Your hands are the biggest cause of transferring the virus to your face. You may be coming in contact with plenty of contaminated surfaces, but if you regularly continue to sanitize and wash your hands, you will be safer.

You should carry a sanitizer around and regularly use it during the day. After your shift is done, you should make sure to wash your hands with water and soap thoroughly.

  • Face Covering

Illustration of people wearing masks for the United Nations
“The power of togetherness, using images people from different COVID19 impacted countries. Image created by Laura Makaltses. Submitted for United Nations Global Call Out To Creatives – help stop the spread of COVID-19.” (Photo via Unsplash)

Having a mask on can greatly decrease the risk of infecting another person in case you are asymptomatic.

Masks are the best shield against the virus since they stop your hands from touching your face too. 

While At Home 

Keeping the germs away from the home is also important. Here are some tips you can follow to ensure that you stay safe as an essential worker during a pandemic and so does your family: 

  • Leave a pair of shoes near a door that you can wear. A place should also be set up to isolate anything you can’t wash and don’t want to take into the house. 
  • Remove your clothes and place them in a hamper by your door. You should use a garbage bag to line the hamper and wash your clothes at once using the warmest temperature possible. 
  • Wipe the phone down or any jewelry you wore during the day
  • Sanitize and wash your hands frequently
  • If you work in a high-risk environment or have people who are at high risk in the home, you should shower immediately too. 
  • Make sure to drink, sleep and eat with the essential nutrients so that your immune system is never compromised 
  • Monitoring your health is also very important. Taking your temperature twice a day to make sure that you don’t have a fever is vital. Do not go to work if you have a fever or you don’t feel well.
  • Girl Drinking Water After Aerobics Exercise
    Drink lots of water! The most natural ingredient your body can use. Avoid dehydration at all costs.


Our first responders are our essential workers. If you are one of these heroes, we salute you but it is vital you stay strong and healthy. Taking these precautions will ultimately keep you and your family safe as well as reduce the risk of you infecting others.