The White House’s new rules are an effort to not only limit the spread of COVID, but to create friction and encourage people to get vaccinated, rather than deal with the logistics of weekly testing. While there are still many details up in the air, we do know that you will be required to test non-vaccinated employees weekly. We’re discussing how it will work, as well as showing you the tools we have to implement this and track it seamlessly.
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Yes. Perhaps related to the Delta variant, we’re seeing common gastrointestinal issues, followed by some other cold-like symptoms, including runny nose, sore throat, congestion, and fever. Any time you have cold or flu-like symptoms paired with GI symptoms, you should be concerned about possible COVID. No one should work sick with GI symptoms - even if it’s just nausea, we recommend keeping someone out for a day to see if anything else develops. With these early COVID symptoms, we usually see something else start to occur within a day or so of when those first stomach issues begin.
Unvaccinated managers are very concerning for so many reasons. In addition to their health risks and the higher costs associated with losing them to quarantine, illness, or worse, they are in the role best suited to coach employees to go get vaccinated. So unvaccinated managers pose greater risk to the business. Some clients have instituted vaccine mandates for managers. Others are designing training specific to unvaccinated managers. And finally, others are using
one on one coaching, like we hope they will do for their unvaccinated teams, which has proven effective. But we agree that addressing unvaccinated managers is key to implementing national vaccine mandates and, more importantly, to getting beyond COVID.
This is a common question, and one we’ve answered before but continue to get repeatedly, in part because the answer is confusing. Yes, it’s technically possible for this person to get COVID again and spread it to others. However, it’s very unlikely in this particular case because the person has already had COVID, so they have extra protection on top of their vaccination. The CDC recommendation here is to allow this person to continue to work, but to have them wear a mask for 14 days. They also recommend that this person gets tested 5-7 days after their exposure (or about 5-7 days into sharing a house with these sick folks, in this case). We wouldn’t recommend letting this person work without a mask for 14 days after their last exposure (or the day the last person in their house can end their self-isolation), so they will be masked for quite a while in this scenario.
Early indications are that it will allow a rapid testing option. The President discussed rapid testing at some length in the speech where he announced the mandate and indicated that there will be more rapid tests available at reduced prices. However, we’ve heard a lot of different things about this guidance that has not yet been drafted. We know that there is not enough PCR testing capacity for the entire US workforce to be tested with laboratory-based tests. And that the turnaround time required for most of them adds immense complications. While we don’t know the definitive answer to this question, most legal and OSHA experts believe that both PCR and rapid tests will be permitted options when the guidance becomes effective.