First, if they’re in certain states (including CA, NY, and many others), they can access a digital vaccination record online, or download a PDF that shows their vaccination info. If they’re in one of the states that doesn’t have that, they should check the place where they got vaccinated, and most will re-issue a new card or print out. Major pharmacies (CVS, Walgreens, and Walmart) all have ways to get a copy of your vaccination info. They can also reach out to their primary care doctor.
Yes, across all of our clients, we’re seeing more and more long COVID. Unfortunately, long COVID can affect people who had very mild symptoms, so it doesn’t necessarily correspond with how sick someone was when they got COVID in the first place. Instead, symptoms like fatigue, dizziness, shortness of breath, brain fog, memory issues, and more plague those with long COVID for weeks, months, and possibly longer. Your HR teams are certainly getting some practice with leaves of absence and reasonable accommodations to affect the increasing number of people who need them. Tiktoker and disability justice advocate Imani Barbarin calls COVID a “mass disabling event” and that really does seem to reflect what your HR teams are seeing out there. How long those people will experience symptoms remains to be seen.
You should consult with your legal team and check the specific requirements in your local jurisdiction, but both California and the currently withdrawn federal ETS allowed not only FDA-authorized vaccines, but also WHO-authorized vaccinations. That expands the list from 3 to 10 acceptable vaccine brands. For those who use ZHH and Zedic’s Vaccine and Test Tracking system, we’ll be adding the remaining WHO-authorized vaccines to allow those who were vaccinated abroad to upload their vaccination records.
We’re very concerned about this increase in Hep A activity. We had hoped that the period without much activity during the first year of COVID broke the Hep A outbreak cycle. But apparently that didn’t happen, because we’re once again seeing regular outbreaks of Hep A. There are two concerning aspects to these new cases. First, they have a very high hospitalization rate - sometimes up to 75% of those infected are requiring hospitalization. That’s a new and very disturbing trend. Second, and even more concerning, is that we have two very public cases of restaurant or foodservice transmission. Zero Hour Health has been very successful in keeping our client’s Hep A cases out of the media. But that’s harder to do when there’s guest transmission, or as in the two most recent cases, there were deaths associated with the outbreak (which is not common).
What you can do to prevent a Hepatitis outbreak are all the same things that you’ve been doing to prevent the transmission of COVID - focus on handwashing, don’t let anyone work sick (especially with GI symptoms!), and make sure that your teams are aware of the symptoms specific to Hepatitis A, like yellow eyes/skin and dark urine.