COVID-19 Question: Employee Exposed! Is It Too Late?
What should I do if I find out several days later, after an employee worked, they were diagnosed with COVID-19?
It can happen… an employee means well, and keeps information to themselves, or delays testing and dismisses symptoms only to find out they are COVID-19 positive. Here is what the CDC recommends.
- If it has been less than 7 days since the sick employee used the facility, clean and disinfect all areas used by the sick employee following the CDC cleaning and disinfection recommendations.
- If it has been 7 days or more since the sick employee used the facility, additional cleaning and disinfection is not necessary. Continue routinely cleaning and disinfecting all high-touch surfaces in the facility.
- Other employees may have been exposed to the virus if they were in “close contact” (within approximately 6 feet) of the sick employee for a prolonged period of time.
- If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
- Those who have symptoms should self-isolate and follow CDC recommended steps.
- In most workplaces, those potentially exposed but with no symptoms should remain at home or in a comparable setting and practice social distancing for 14 days.
- Critical infrastructure employees should follow Implementing Safety Practices for Critical Infrastructure Employees Who May Have Had Exposure to a Person with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19. A critical infrastructure employee who is symptom-free and returns to work should wear a cloth face covering at all times while in the workplace for 14 days after last exposure. Employers can issue cloth face coverings or can approve employees’ supplied cloth face coverings in the event of shortages.
- Employees not considered exposed should self-monitor for symptoms. If they develop symptoms, they should notify their supervisor and stay home.