Guidance on when an employee may return to the worksite after infection or exposure to COVID-19
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- Close contacts of positive cases of COVID-19
- Test positive for COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19
Close contacts of positive cases of COVID-19
Employees who have been in close contact with a confirmed or presumed case of COVID-19 can enter the worksite after exposure if they:
- are symptom-free and
- have not been instructed to quarantine by local public health authorities
For 14 days after exposure, the employee should:
- self monitor for symptoms
- wear a medical mask or respirator at all times when in the workplace, even if physical distancing can be maintained
- follow other preventive practices in the worksite (for example, maximize physical distancing, refrain from eating and drinking in shared spaces)
In general, routine workplace interactions with appropriate preventive practices in place are not close contacts.
If symptoms develop, the employee should follow the guidance for employees who test positive for COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19.
Test positive for COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19
An employee should not return to the worksite for at least 7 days if they have:
- tested positive for COVID-19 with either a rapid antigen test or a PCR test or
- symptoms of COVID-19 and are unable to be tested (are presumed to have COVID-19)
Before returning to the worksite, the employee must be asymptomatic. All symptoms must have resolved, with the exception of any residual cough.
A local public health authority or health care provider may determine that an employee (for example, an immunocompromised individual) should not return to the worksite for a longer period of time. In this case, the employee should follow the recommendation of the local public health authority or health care provider.
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