General cleaning information for COVID-19

This page was last updated 20 February 2020.

This page provides information about cleaning processes to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This can be used by education providers (eg, schools and universities) and accommodation providers (eg, hotels and motels) or in any other public place.

Always wear disposable gloves when cleaning. When finished, place used gloves in a rubbish bin. Wash your hands immediately after handling these items.

Clean your hands

Regardless of whether you wore disposable gloves while cleaning, you should wash your hands regularly. You should wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, making sure you dry them thoroughly. You can use hand sanitiser (containing at least 60 percent alcohol) if soap and water are not available and if your hands are not visibly dirty. If using hand sanitiser, cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

Guidance for cleaning personnel

  • Wash items such as dishes, drinking glasses, cups and eating utensils in the dishwasher (you should use a commercial cleaner if you have one) or use soap/detergent and water to wash them thoroughly.
  • Clean all ‘high-touch’ surfaces such as desks, counters, table tops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards and bedside tables every day with antiseptic wipes or disinfectant, including bleach solutions.
  • Clean toilets with a separate set of cleaning equipment (disposable cleaning cloths, mops, etc).
  • Clean floors with disinfectant or bleach solution, starting from one end of the premises to another (from the exit inwards) every day.
  • Wash laundry items such as bedding, towels, tea towels, cushion covers and other fabrics and dry thoroughly outside or with a dryer. Wear disposable gloves while handling soiled items. Wash hands immediately after removing gloves or after handling these items.
  • Read and follow directions on the labels of laundry or clothing and detergent. In general, wash and dry laundry and clothing with the warmest temperatures recommended on the label.

You should read all cleaning product labels and follow the recommendations provided on them. Product labels contain instructions for safe and effective use of the cleaning product, including precautions you should take when applying the product, such as wearing gloves or aprons and making sure you have good ventilation (eg, open windows) while you use it.

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