COVID-19 Exposure Guidance

With the number of positive cases of COVID-19 rising across the country, it’s possible that an employee of your organization may be infected with COVID-19 during this pandemic. As an employer, it’s important to know the steps you should take to protect your organization, the affected employee, and the rest of your team if an employee tests positive for COVID-19 while at work.

The following scenarios are based on Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Department of Health Services (DHS) guidelines and are representative of how M3 is addressing our internal response. We encourage employers to develop the most appropriate response based on their individual business needs.

SCENARIO 1:

An employee has/had close contact with a confirmed case of person with COVID-19

  1. Employee notifies Manager and HR right away
  2. Employee will be required to quarantine and not permitted to come to the office through quarantine period
    1. Employee should contact healthcare provider to seek guidance on being tested
    2. After quarantine, employee may return assuming no symptoms
  3. Employee should work with Manager and HR regarding work from home and/or paid leave options

SCENARIO 2:

An employee has acute respiratory illness/COVID-19 symptoms

 If employee is at home:

  1. Employee should stay home
  2. Employee should call healthcare provider before seeking treatment unless it’s an emergency (If seeking emergency medical care, call ahead to notify of symptoms)
  3. Employee should notify Manager and HR right away
  4. Employee should follow doctor’s guidance, stay home and not be permitted to come to the office until all of the following have occurred:
    1. Employee has had no fever for at least 72 hours (without the use of fever-reducing or symptom-altering medication)
    2. Other symptoms have improved (i.e. cough or shortness of breath have improved)
    3. At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared
      1. Employee should work with Manager and HR regarding work from home and/or paid leave options

If employee is at work:

  1. Separate from other employees
  2. Go directly home immediately
  3. Follow steps 2-4 above
  4. Shut down employee’s direct work area and any other identified areas
  5. Contact cleaning company to sanitize/deep clean office areas as appropriate

SCENARIO 3:

An employee tests positive for COVID-19

  1. Employee should notify Manager and HR right away
  2. HR works with Employee to identify employees, clients, vendors that were in contact with Employee
  3. Communication delivered to those identified parties
    1. Maintain confidentiality and follow HIPAA regulations (i.e., An employee who works in XXX department & XXX location).
  4. Identified parties must be sent home to follow steps as outlined above in Scenario 1
  5. HR works with Facilities department to have cleaning company sanitize/deep clean office areas as appropriate
  6. HR contacts DHS and DHS helps as necessary
  7. HR communicates with the entire company regarding the situation and next step guidance, maintaining confidentiality and following HIPAA regulations
  8. Employee will be required to follow doctor’s guidance, stay home and not be permitted to come to the office until doctor’s release
  9. Employee should work with Manager and HR regarding work from home and/or paid leave options
  10. Clean and disinfect spaces in order to avoid further spread of COVID-19. This document from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services provides guidance on what areas to disinfect, what disinfecting products to use, how to disinfect, what protective equipment to wear, and who should disinfect the contaminated areas. The cleaning procedures in this document should reduce any health hazard risk.

Note: Your internal HR team members should be the only ones with knowledge of details surrounding a positive case. If an employee alerts a manager or another employee, that person must instruct the employee to contact HR, and no information may be disclosed to anyone other than HR. HR should be the only department relaying information.

 

M3 is committed to helping you stay current with COVID-19 information that impacts your business. Click here to access M3’s dedicated COVID-19 Business Resources page.

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M3 risk management services are advisory only.  Any reports or documentation provided by M3 are based on information supplied by the client and on observations of conditions and practices at the time of visit (if applicable) and may not include all risks or hazards.  Clients are responsible for evaluating the accuracy, completeness and usefulness of any opinions, advice, services or information provided as well as for compliance with applicable Federal, State and local laws and regulations.  Under no circumstances is the information contained herein to be construed as legal advice.  M3 disclaims all warranties and in no event shall be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental or consequential damages arising out of the use of the information provided.  Any reports or documentation provided do not amend or affect the provisions or coverages of your insurance policies and are not a representation that coverage exists for any particular claim.

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