What To Do If An Employee Tests Positive For COVID-19

Positive Covid19 Employee

Every business owner is feeling the impact and uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic. Adjusting business plans, changing budgets, and creating remote working operations are just a few of the important areas that need your attention. And, just when you think you’re finally getting used to all the changes, one of your employees tells you that they’ve tested positive for coronavirus.

With scientists predicting that the virus to be around for the next 24 months, it’s likely that this may very well happen. As an employer, having one of your staff members testing positive for COVID-19 is both a highly sensitive and complex challenge to face. Above all, as a manager or leader, this will require swift action with clearly defined steps that will need to be urgently set in motion.

Important Steps To Take When It Comes To The Employee

  • First and foremost, express sympathy and offer your support as well as the support of the company as a whole
  • Connect with HR or consult with your HR partner. Most HR personnel and companies will have various protocols in place to best assist with this situation
  • Ask the employee to provide a list of coworkers, clients, visitors, and vendors who they have been in contact with for the past two weeks

Important Steps To Take When It Comes To Other Staff Members

  • Once you have a full list of those who may be infected, alert those who have been in close contact with the employee as soon as possible, repeat the advice given by WHO and direct them to their own doctors
  • The law states that you can tell those that may have possibly been exposed to the virus without revealing the employee’s identity
  • Due to the sensitive nature of this topic, it is better to alert the affected staff by video or phone call. However, time is of the essence here — so if you can’t reach them, email them with something such as, ‘Important Action Required’ as the subject of the email
  • Be prepared for lots of questions. Again, answer what you can and direct them to WHO website and their doctors if they have any concerns
  • Follow up your initial conversation with an email. It’s likely the person may have been feeling overwhelmed and may not have understood and taken in everything you said over the phone or video
  • Once you have spoken with both the employee who tested positive and their close contacts, consider alerting others in the workplace. Remember to be transparent and supportive.

Important Steps To Take When It Comes To The Workplace

  • Employers should consider closing their office or workplace immediately, coordinating with employees to work remotely if possible
  • Hire professionals to clean and disinfect your entire company, using CDC-recommended and EPA-registered disinfectants 
  • Make sure all infected materials are cleaned, disinfected, and properly disposed of as biohazard waste
  • Once your team returns to work, companies should develop personal hygiene best practices and office cleaning policies, as well as encourage their employees to wear gloves, masks and protective gear where necessary

For more tips on how to properly clean your office during the COVID-19 pandemic, click here.

Because of the quick-spreading nature of COVID-19, it is vital to have your facility cleaned by professionals with the right training, skills, and certifications. For over a decade, Restoration 1 has specialized in Biohazard Cleanup, which means our certified experts are on standby for all your company’s Coronavirus cleaning needs. Our team is certified by the IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning & Restoration Certification) and uses approved CDC and EPA industrial-strength disinfectants.

At Restoration 1, we understand that these are not easy times for anyone, let us take care of disinfecting and sanitizing your workspace quickly and effectively so that you can focus on the wellbeing of your employees and other important areas that need your attention.For more information about our Virus Disinfection & Sanitation needs, contact Restoration 1 today. 

To find out more about COVID-19 and for the most up-to-date news, visit www.who.int.

*Cleaning and decontamination services effectively address immediate conditions, but no chemical or process eliminates 100% of all organisms.