Updated: Oct 8, 2020
Unfortunately we aren't out of the Covid-19 weeds yet and still need to take precautions in the workplace.
According to CDC guidelines here are the steps and protocols if someone at work is diagnosed positive with Covid-19:
Notify other employees of potential exposure.
Communicate that someone tested positive, but keep medical information private and don't share who did get sick.
It's ok if people figure it out on their own, but be sure if you're an employer or manager who has authority to hire and fire to not reveal private information.
Exposed employees probably don’t need to quarantine unless they had close contact for a prolonged period of time.
This isn’t precisely defined, but 15 minutes at less than 6 feet apart would qualify, even with masks.
The CDC updates these guidelines as needed, so you can check this page for the latest information.
Next, you should follow CDC and local health department guidance on cleaning and quarantining.
Areas of the worksite where the infected person worked or visited should be closed for 24 hours, or as long as possible, then thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Here’s a page with detailed CDC guidance.
The sick employee should talk to their healthcare provider to determine when to return.
For those who have a presumptive case of COVID-19 (meaning they didn’t get a test), their provider will probably let them return when:
At least 72 hours have passed since recovery, defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and improvement in respiratory symptoms and,
At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
Properly handling Covid cases is critical for 2 reasons: it's important to protect people and it's vital the economy doesn't get shut down again.
Businesses need to stay open – and not just the big box ones. Small business is the life blood of our economy and the livelihood of most Americans.
Take care to manage Covid-19 in your workplace and let's keep America running.