Guidelines for Re-opening of Worship Center, as Stated by NCDC
In response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Nigeria has introduced several public health and social measures (PHSM). And with the re-opening of the worship centre in Nigeria, NCDC has stated some guidelines which we should know; in other to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
This article has provided you with all information regarding the guidelines for re-opening of the worship centre, as stated by NCDC. Carefully read through.]
COVId-19 in Nigeria
The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is caused by a virus that spreads through droplets released when an infected person coughs or sneezes. A person can become infected with the virus by being in close contact (within 2 metres) of an infected person
Infection can also spread by touching a surface or object that an infected person coughed or sneezed on. The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) launched the #TakeResponsibility campaign in March 2020 to encourage Nigerians and residents to take individual and collective responsibility to reduce the spread of the coronavirus disease.
The following symptoms may develop within 14 days after exposure to COVID-19:
- Shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing
- Sore throat
- Body pain
- The recent loss of taste or smell
- Runny nose/catarrh
- Fatigue (tiredness)
Guidelines on Re-Opening Places of Worship
Before opening, disinfect place of worship by fumigating the entire building, congregation space and car parks. Wipe all surfaces with a disinfecting agent.
- Disinfect regularly touched surfaces by washing or wiping with disinfectant.
- Open windows and doors to Enable air in and out.
- Make adequate provision for soap, running water & hand sanitizer at entry points.
- There should be no entry without face masks, provide disposable face masks where practicable.
- To help educate on COVID 19, it is recommended for places of worship to have preventive messages from NCDC posted at entry points and around places of worship.
- Holy Communion should be packaged in disposable wraps.
- Drinking water points, public toilets and sales outlets must be closed for now.
- Ablution should be done at home, do not share kettles or any personal items.
- Religious leaders must maintain 2 meters when praying or counselling and avoid body contact with members.
- Places of worship should be free of carpets and rugs to allow easy disinfection of the floor.
- Places of worship must open only between 5 am and 8 pm.
- Choristers are to go home with their robes.
- Hijabs are not to be shared.
Attendance in every service should not exceed 1/3 of the sitting capacity of the auditorium to enable physical distancing; all other members should join the service virtually.
The keeping of registers for worshippers and attendees is encouraged at entry points with proper regard for hand hygiene; hand sanitizers should be made available and persons advised to use their personal pen. This makes contact tracing easy should the need arise.
Also Read – Social Distancing Guidelines, as Stated by NCDC
Other Guidelines for Re-opening of Worship Center Includes;
- Ensure temperature checks at the point of entry, persons with temperature over 37.50C should be asked to leave & seek medical attention.
- Have handwashing facilities in front of places of worship. For Muslims, encourage them to perform ablution (wudu) at home.
- Clearly separate and mark areas in place of worship, to ensure 2 meters distance between people.
- Ensure separate entry and exit points into places of worship and avoid overcrowding at entry and exit points.
- Offer alcohol-based hand sanitizers to worshippers as they enter the place of worship.
- Ensure adequate ventilation in halls of worship, open windows, and doors for air to circulate in and out freely most especially when using air conditioners.
- Encourage congregating in open spaces.
- Establish a regular sanitizing or cleaning routine, surfaces frequently touched must be cleaned at intervals during worship.
- As much as possible, virtual meetings, preaching, and visits are encouraged in place of physical ones.
- At the beginning of worship, it is advised to give a short reminder on hygiene guidelines to prevent COVID, such as advising worshippers to cough into their elbows or tissues which must be discarded properly.
- Encourage worshippers that are most vulnerable (i.e. adults 60 and over and people of all ages with underlying medical conditions) and those with symptoms of illness to stay at home.
- Encourage electronic means of collecting tithes and contributions to limit contact with possible contaminated cash or cheques.
- Sunday schools, Islamiyah, children Bible classes and all childcare classes are discouraged for now; children should be with their parents.
Through social distancing, you can protect yourself, loved ones and society at large. This is an effective way to limit the chances of catching the virus, slowing down the transmission and reducing the spread of COVID-19 in Nigeria.
If we can adhere to this, we will be able to quickly and effectively halt the spread of the disease, resume our routine daily activities and be with our loved ones.
VIsit NCDC Guideline Page – For more information
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