Safety Services


Living with respiratory infections including COVID-19 and managing risks in the workplace

The Government has removed COVID-19 restrictions and this page explains the safety measures that departments should continue to consider.

The Government has removed the remaining domestic COVID-19 restrictions in England and published advice on living safely with respiratory infections including COVID-19, which includes measures such as getting vaccinated, keeping spaces well ventilated and practicing good hygiene. This page explains the safety measures that departments should continue to consider.

Risk assessment

Whilst the Health and Safety Executive no longer expects businesses to consider COVID-19 in their risk assessment, departments should continue to take a risk-based approach and consider COVID-19 in their risk assessments. Sensible steps should be taken to minimise the risk of respiratory infections, including COVID-19, entering and spreading within the work area. 

Workplace inspections

To ensure that UCL remains a COVID-19 secure workplace, we still need to monitor control measures through routine workplace inspections.

The following COVID-19 risk control measures must be included in departmental routine inspection checklists.

  • Where possible, windows are opened to increase ventilation
  • Mechanical ventilation systems are operational
  • Hand sanitising facilities are available and being used when entering a building and throughout the building especially where equipment may be shared

The inspection template AT0093 will not be removed should departments want to continue using it to monitor their COVID-19 control measures. Safety Services is still required to provide assurance that the above COVID-19 control measures are being adhered to and will be requesting evidence from departments that the risk control measures above are being routinely inspected.

Face coverings

Staff, students and visitors are no longer expected to wear face coverings or masks on campus. In line with Government guidance, UCL recognises that it is an individual’s choice to wear a face covering or not, whether at UCL or in wider society

First aid

If there are changes to staffing levels, departments will need to ensure there is sufficient first aid cover for the number of staff on-site and the activities being undertaken.

  • Review departmental first aid needs assessment and decide the number of first aiders required for the number of staff who will be present and the activities that they are doing. This could be by a sharing agreement with another department
  • Determine whether returning first aider(s) are still comfortable with and agree to provide first aid. Names of First Aiders must be entered into the Department’s Responsible Persons Register in riskNET as a formal record if they have not already been entered. Those who no longer want to undertake the role must be removed from the register 
  • Where there are no first aiders departments can designate an “Appointed person (first aid)” to take charge of first aid arrangements
  • Departments must inform everyone about the first aid arrangements including any shared first aiders, e.g. how to contact them and how to get help directly via 222 or 999 and the arrangement for receiving medical personnel when they arrive at the scene
  • Departments must not carry out high risk activities without adequate first aid provision

> Read more about first aid provision at UCL 

Fire evacuation marshals (FEM)

Departments should ensure there are sufficient numbers of FEMs available in occupied working spaces to successfully implement the fire evacuation arrangements and to assist all persons evacuating the building safely. Fire marshals will be required for all workspaces, even in areas of reduced occupancy.

To achieve a suitable number of FEMs, departments may need to consider implementing a rota/schedule for their work areas to ensure suitable FEM coverage throughout the working day.

Remote working

It is important to follow the principles for a good DSE workstation both when on campus or working remotely. You should complete a DSE assessment on riskNET for your contracted place of work.

> Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Assessment
Hybrid working guidance for professional services and technical staff 2022


Good ventilation can help reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading in enclosed workplaces and UCL continues to monitor and manage the standard of ventilation in its buildings.

  • In rooms with mechanical ventilation, the systems have been set to supply as much fresh air as possible and recirculation modes turned off where appropriate
  • In spaces without mechanical ventilation, a fresh supply of air will be provided by leaving windows and doors open where appropriate

Staff are reminded that maintenance or service requests and other requests to address building issues should be made via the Estates Customer Helpdesk.

Contacting the Estates Customer Helpdesk
> Web: www.ucl.ac.uk/estates/customer-helpdesk/raise-service-request
> Email: efdservices@ucl.ac.uk
> Tel: 020 7679 0000 or extension 30000

Last updated: Thursday, August 18, 2022