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How to avoid spreading coronavirus (COVID-19) at work

This page will help workers take steps to prevent COVID-19 spreading in their workplace. Translations are available at the end of the page.

When working, follow these guidelines to stop the spread of coronavirus and help save lives.

Keep 2 metres apart (social distancing)

Keep a safe space of 2 metres between people, where possible.

What your employer should do

If it is not possible to keep people 2 metres apart, employers should use other ways to prevent coronavirus spreading, such as:

  • limit how many people are in the work area
  • organising the space so people are side-by-side or facing away from each other
  • using screens to create a physical barrier between people

Wash your hands

Wash your hands frequently using soap and water or use hand sanitiser. Try not to touch your face.

What your employer should do

Employers should provide somewhere for people to wash their hands and provide hand sanitiser in the workplace.

Clean your workplace

Increase how often and how thoroughly your workplace is cleaned, including:

  • frequently touched surfaces
  • surfaces that are not normally cleaned

What your employer should do

Employers should provide standard cleaning products for your workplace.

Have good ventilation

Make sure there is good ventilation in your work area. Open windows if it is safe to do so. Keep doors open if you can, but not fire doors.

What your employer should do

Employers should take steps to improve poorly ventilated areas in the workplace.

More help

There’s more advice on keeping workplaces safe from COVID on the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE’s) website at


This guidance is also available in the following languages:

This page is reviewed regularly and updated to reflect any changes in the guidance.

Page last reviewed: 28 May 2021

Next review due: 30 June 2021