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ITC Hotels partners with DNV GL to build trust in health, hygiene and safety protocol

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In keeping with its Responsible Luxury ethos of creating planet positive experiences, ITC Hotels have further strengthened their commitment to a safe world through a partnership with DNV GL. In a first for the hospitality industry, DNV GL Business Assurance is working on upgrading ITC Hotels’ 'WeAssure' health, hygiene, infection and safety protocol. The new Competency & Capability Development framework endeavors to generate greater consumer confidence. DNV GL shall train hotel personnel & associates and enable smooth implementation of the protocol. Communication of a sound infection prevention and mitigation program to customers is central to business continuity in a safe environment.

With many Indian states easing lockdown curbs and allowing hotels to re-open, assuring customers about safety and hygiene levels is paramount. The industry now requires a different approach to organizational infection risk management. The level required has only previously been seen in hospitals & healthcare industries but now every company must comply quickly, demonstrating to customers beyond any doubt the ability to manage the level of infection risk posed by COVID-19.

ITC Hotels engaged DNV GL Business Assurance, one of the world’s leading, independent, Third-Party assessment and certification bodies in launching the 'WeAssure' programme, an initiative of its Responsible Luxury philosophy. 'WeAssure' is aimed towards reassuring guests of stringent cleanliness and disinfection practices benchmarking near clinically hygienic standards at ITC Hotels.

Based on  DNV GL Business Assurance’s proprietary My Care - Infection & Emergent Pathogen Risk prevention framework, the programme will review and help in upgrading ITC Hotels existing hygiene and safety standards across India. The result will be a much elevated health, hygiene and safety standard for ITC Hotels that meet national and international regulations and industry-best practices.

DNV GL Business Assurance is one of the world’s leading certification bodies. The partnership between ITC Hotels & DNV GL will set a new benchmark in the hospitality industry. The heightened levels of health, hygiene & safety will strenghten ITC Hotels ‘WeAssure’ programme and create greater moments of trust for the customer. Our Responsible Luxury philosophy is committed to delivering world-class luxury experiences that address the most important needs of wellbeing and safety though responsible practices that are immensely relevant in the unprecedented circumstances we face today’’, stated Anil Chadha-COO, ITC Hotels.

The implementation will be assessed by DNV GL according to a Maturity Assessment Protocol based on Health, Hygiene, Safety & Emerging Pathogen Management standards and guidelines. It will involve a review and extension of infection standards, detailed risk assessment of processes and practices including front office, housekeeping, laundry, food and beverage, facility layout, equipment maintenance, infection risk management and environmental surveillance to name a few.

To build trust toward all its stakeholders and ensure continual improvement, assessment of ITC Hotels will be conducted at regular intervals. Customers visiting the ITC Hotels compliant to the new standard will be able to verify these themselves through the trust mark displayed online or on the premises.

The COVID-19 situation is fast changing. National and international requirements can be extensive and continuously changing. Mitigating actions must be tailored to industry specific processes and the changes required to be compliant can be complex. A pro-active approach enables companies to put standards and systems in place to build resilience now and for the post COVID-19 environment.

“Working daily with hospitals on quality and infection prevention, we know how complex but also how critical it is to have the right standard and risk-based preventive systems in place,” says Luca Crisciotti CEO DNV GL - Business Assurance. “To support ITC in putting a robust system in place that helps them regain and continually build trust toward customers, we combine our experience and expertise from HSE and risk management, our own infection prevention standard for hospitals and industry-wide best practices.”