Many flower shops that are operating around the world, whether online or offline were forced to close or stop operations because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some online florists who managed to continue the business faced several changes as health protocols are called to be observed and followed. One of the changes is the no-contact flower delivery. The flowers are delivered to the address but no direct contact and conversation should happen.
However, there is still a big question if it is safe to receive a flower delivery during the pandemic. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), as long as there is no contact, it is safe to deliver and receive flowers because the transmission of the infectious disease is lower in contactless transactions. Moreover, there are safety measures that you can do at home if you are about to receive a flower delivery on special day.
Follow the Guidelines
Although there is no evidence yet that the COVID-19 infection can be transmitted in flowers and plants, the person handling the flowers is possible to transmit the virus to another person, if he is infected. For this reason, the government imposed guidelines and protocols among workers to wear face mask and face shield and to sanitize hands frequently. If you are staying at home, you are required to follow the guidelines, too, especially if you are receiving a flower delivery. As it becomes a part of the “new normal,” you can expect that the flower shops and the couriers are doing the same thing to stop the spread of the virus.
Ask for Notification
If you are expecting a flower delivery, ask the florist to notify you before the driver or the delivery agent arrives at your doorstep. The delivery agent, on the other hand, is instructed to ring the doorbell and leave the flowers outside. It is safe not to talk with the agent, but when certain circumstances require conversation, it is best to observe physical distancing.
Disinfect the Package
Disinfection of the package, including the flower bouquets, is done during the packaging of the flowers at the flower shop and after the packaging is completed. However, the person receiving the flowers should also disinfect the package. A spray of disinfectant or sanitizer before touching any part of the package is required for safety purposes. Although the WHO reiterates that there is a lower rate of transmission from packages, it is still safer to not touch anything until disinfected.
When the flowers arrive and you want to transfer the blooms to a flower vase, it is also advised to use proper protective gear like face mask, hand gloves, or plastic covering. Regardless of the age of the person touching it, whether he or she is in senior age or in younger and middle age, taking extra precautionary measures is the right thing to do all the time.
Wash Hands before and after
Before opening the package and after, it is safe to wash your hands with soap and water. The health experts say that alcohol and sanitizer are both effective in disinfecting the hands. However, washing hands with soap and water is the best option, as always. When you receive a package of flower bouquets, and you open it to transfer to a flower vase, there is a chance that your hands will touch any of its surface. By washing your hands immediately, spread of germs and virus will be eliminated and the risk of getting infected will be reduced.
After removing gloves, hand washing is still a must. Washing your hands should be done with soap and water, following the guidelines of the government to rub each finger thoroughly and wash both hands completely for 20 seconds.
Use the Right Cleaning/Disinfectant Materials
According to health experts, not all cleaning materials are disinfectants. Some may clean but may also cause skin irritation while some products are safe on skin and effective in fighting off viruses and germs as well. The most recommended disinfectant solution is one that is EPA-registered. It can be safer to clean the surface first and disinfect it right after.
Moreover, in using any disinfectants, especially the chemical-based products, wearing a skin protection and an eye protection is a must. This will prevent any untoward incidences just in case the chemical splashes off. Another important thing to keep in mind is to follow strictly the recommended dosage provided in the label. After using these products, make sure that you keep them in places that are out of children’s reach.
Sending the gift of flowers to family, friends, and relatives during the pandemic is a thoughtful way of expressing greetings, support, and care. This is a tough time for everyone, and with a gift of flower bouquets, things can be more bearable. However, safety and protection should be considered, whether you are the one sending it or the one receiving it. By following the protocols imposed by the government, you will prevent the spread of infection within your home. It is also safer to continue the same precautionary measures when receiving flowers even after the stricter lockdown is lifted. To receive flowers as gift during the COVID-19 pandemic is a wonderful feeling, knowing that there are people who remember you. It does not have to be scary, especially if you know what to do once a flower delivery arrives at your doorstep on special day or on any ordinary day.