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Workplace and Employer Concerns

Should I go to work? Should I send somebody home?

From Dr. Chris Spitters, Health Officer:

Employees should ensure they are fever-free and asymptomatic before leaving home and reporting for work. If they do not have fever or respiratory symptoms they may report to work. 

While at work, if they develop fever (measured temperature above 100.0 F or subjective fever) OR respiratory symptoms like a sore throat, cough, or difficulty breathing, they should:

  • immediately self-isolate (separate themselves from others);
  • notify their supervisor;
  • go home and stay home until 7 days after symptom onset or 72 hours after symptoms resolve, whichever is longer; and
  • If symptoms persist or worsen, call their health care provider for further guidance.

Employers in healthcare settings could consider measuring temperature and assessing symptoms prior to starting work. For others, relying on employee reports is acceptable in most settings.

Employers are encouraged to maximize telecommuting options for as many employees as possible, but particularly individuals at risk of COVID-19.

Additional recommendations to decrease social contacts in the workplace include:

  • Increase physical space between workers and customers at the worksite – 6 feet apart
  • Decrease social contacts in the workplace (limit in-person meetings, break room, cafeteria, and other gatherings)
  • Stagger work schedules, consider alternate team approaches for work schedules.
  • Establish liberal leave and telework policies, 7-day leave policies for people with symptoms
  • Cancel non-essential work travel and work-sponsored conferences, tradeshows, etc.