COVID 19 – Openreach Planning
10th March 2020
We have received an important notification from Openreach, regarding new processes they have introduced for engineer visits, in light of CORVID 19.
Whilst the number of confirmed cases so far in the UK remains low, England’s Chief Medical Officer has warned of the high risk of the COVID 19 outbreak becoming a full epidemic.
As part of Openreach’s planning, and in line with guidance from the UK Government on the prevention of the spread of viral infection, Openreach have introduced steps for their engineering teams whilst visiting end customer premises.
With effect from 9 March, before entering an end customer’s premises* Openreach engineers will be asking two questions, to establish the possible presence of a patient with Coronavirus:
- Has anyone in the premises been diagnosed with COVID-19, has been asked to self- isolate, or has been travelling to a coronavirus high-risk area or country in the last 14 days?
- Is anyone in the premises suffering from flu-like symptoms?
If the answer to the first question is yes, the engineer will contact a special hotline for further advice on how to proceed and to ensure the job is furthered correctly for reappointment by CPs, as and when appropriate.
If the answer to the second question is yes, the engineer will proceed with the job, but will undertake additional hygiene actions. This includes wiping surfaces, asking the end customer to stay in a different room, to not accept drinks, and on finishing the job to not complete the sign-off with the customer.
If the answer to both questions is no, the job will proceed as normal.
Openreach will engage with industry at SMF and CFPCG next week to review this process in more detail, including how CPs can help through engagement at the initial customer point of contact, and how Openreach serve vulnerable customers.