The first and most critical step is to ensure that the employee who tested positive for COVID-19 remains home.The coronavirus is highly contagious and, once the employee returns to the workplace, it may quickly spread to and infect other staff members.
Fremont, CA: At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in early 2020, businesses have been developing strategies to deal with the virus. Employees have operated remotely, and social distancing laws have been in place. Offices have embraced additional cleanliness protocols, and masks have been required.
But what if, considering all of the company's best plans and attempts to prevent the illness from reaching your office, an employee tests positive for COVID-19?
Send the Employee Home
The first and most critical step is to ensure that the employee who tested positive for COVID-19 remains home. The coronavirus is hugely contagious and, once the employee returns to the workplace, it may quickly spread to and infect other staff members.
Even if the employee has exhausted all their sick days, it is necessary to ensure that they can stay at home and away from their colleagues. Allowing the person to work could transmit the coronavirus to other staff members and eventually shut down the entire office or venue when so many workers are sick.
Clean Any Surfaces or Objects that the Sick Employee has touched
If a COVID-19 affected employee returns to work, ensure that anything he came into contact with is cleaned and disinfected. Where needed, evacuate the area as soon as possible. Any COVID-19 particles that may be on the surface may die after some time.
Inform other employees that they might have been exposed to the virus. According to the CDC, there is a chance of exposure within a distance of six feet. Anyone who has come into touch with the employee affected even in the period prior to the positive test should be notified.
Decide When the Employee can Return to Work
Suppose the employee may not show symptoms and remote work is feasible, working from home could be the better option. However, if the employee's work is on-site only, it is necessary to determine whether the employee will be able to return. How long an employee must be isolated will depend on the severity of the symptoms.