There is increasing evidence, with a second confirmed case, that COVID-19 reinfection can occur in less than 90 days. We will keep a close eye on this and update our guidelines about when we exclude previously COVID+ folks as needed.
Flu season is here. We’re starting to see confirmed flu cases. Get your flu shots, folks!
While some health departments have a history of going public on health issues, that practice has escalated this week - particularly in Colorado. We’re also seeing closure of businesses for at least 24 hours in Upstate NY, Massachusetts and New Mexico (up to 14 days). Employee positives in NM remain the most challenging anywhere!
Bubbles work. The NBA had zero COVID-19 cases inside its 6,500-person bubble during the restarted season, the NHL was able to do it, too.
If an employee lives in the basement and has had no contact with the person who tested positive for over a month, do we need to exclude?
No. It only matters if they’ve had close physical contact in the time when the sick person might be infectious. If they have separate spaces and don’t interact at all, there’s no need to exclude this employee.
An employee has allergies and takes medication. They are dog sitting and have congestion not relieved with meds, which is normal for them. Can they work?
If congestion is their only symptom, but it’s new and not resolved by medication, we would generally keep them out for 3 days from their symptom onset. If no other symptoms develop or worsen during that time, they can return after 3 days.
An employee’s mom tested positive recently. He had COVID symptoms that started a few weeks ago, but was never tested. Does he need to be excluded again?
Unfortunately, yes. It’s very possible that he already had COVID, but without a confirmed positive test, we can’t be sure, so we need to exclude someone every time they are exposed to another positive. If he had previously tested positive, we’d have allowed him to work during the 90 days after his positive test, though as we covered in the recap above, the data on that is changing.
I have an employee who we know lied on their survey (said they weren’t symptomatic, but they were, got tested, and now positive). How do we handle this?
We can only give clinical guidance and this person needs to be excluded from the date of their symptom onset for ten days, and their close contacts need to be excluded for 14 days from the most recent exposure to this person while they were infectious. The violation of illness policy should be referred to HR or senior management for follow up and disciplinary action. This would be an offense resulting in employment termination for many of our clients.
Harvard’s William A. Haseltine shares some of the lessons learned from one of our worst epidemics.
Lessons from AIDS for the COVID-19 Pandemic
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Disclaimer: This Executive Summary is meant for general information and educational purposes only and does not constitute, and is not intended as, any form of medical, legal or regulatory advice or a recommendation or suggestion regarding the same. No recipient of this information should act or refrain from acting on the basis of this information without first seeking legal advice from counsel in the relevant jurisdiction.