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COVID-19 and Businesses

Last updated: September 7, 2021

  1. WORKFORCE
    1. If I have an employee test positive, do I let the public know?
      No, personal health information is protected by HIPAA. As a business, you can communicate there is a positive case but it is not a requirement.
    2. If my employee calls to say they’ve tested positive for COVID-19, is a doctor’s note required before the employee can return or to confirm the illness?
      A doctor’s note is not required for an employee to return to work. Employees should not return to work until there is no fever for 24 hours, it has been 10 days since the first symptoms occurred and symptoms have improved.
    3. I don’t offer my employees paid sick leave. What should I do if someone gets COVID-19?
      Some employees are guaranteed paid leave based on Federal criteria. If your employees are not covered, you should be as flexible as possible, as sick employees should not be at work.
      https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employer-paid-leave
    4. If an employee or customer tells me they tested positive for COVID-19, do I contact the Department of Health to initiate contact tracing?
      Private health information is protected by HIPAA. The individual can contact the Department of Health to perform any contact tracing. If the health department receives information on a positive test result, contact tracing is started.
    5. Do I have to shut my business down if one of my staff tests positive for COVID-19, and if so, how long?
      The decision to close a business depends on many things such as the transmission rate in the community and the readiness to protect the safety and health of employees and customers. Closures are determined on a case-by-case basis.
    6. If an employee has a family member who tests positive for COVID-19, what should that employee do?
      If someone in an employee’s household has tested positive for COVID-19, the positive person should isolate from that employee. Unless the employee is essential personnel, the employee should quarantine for 10 days from the last day they were exposed to the infected person. They may be released on day 7 if they test negative on day 5. If they are essential workers, they may return to work but must be monitored for symptoms, wear face coverings when interacting with co-workers and customers, wash hands frequently, disinfect all surfaces touched and stay 6 feet from other people if possible.
  2. SANITATION/HYGIENE
    1. Is there anything I can buy for my ventilation system that will help kill the virus?
      It is recommended to make sure HVAC systems are in proper working condition. Change filters on a regular basis, upgrade to HEPA filters, and increase ventilation and air circulation whenever possible.
    2. What is the best cleaner to use in between customers to ensure the virus is not on surfaces?
      Disinfect surfaces using EPA-approved products for use against SARS-Cov-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and that are appropriate for the surface. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/disinfecting-building-facility.html

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