Amendment History

Document reference

SEWP001

Document title

C-19 Resource Document for Workplaces

The amendments that have occurred since the original version of this document are shown below:

Version Section(s) amended Date Details of amendment
V00.01   9 December 2020 Added more information about NHS Covid-19 App
V00.02   9 December 2020 Added more information about NHS Covid-19 App
V01.01   14  December 2020 Changed isolation period for contacts to 10 days and added clarified that date of symptom onset or last date of exposure is day “0”
V02.01   17 December 2020 Added resources in multiple languages
V02.02   17 December 2020 Added Q&A section on pubs/restaurants
V04.00   11 January 2021 Amended the guidance links. Updated questions and answers for isolation and closure of workplaces

Document title: C-19 Resource Document for Workplaces

Document Code: SEWP001

Protective Marking OFFICIAL

Document type: Resource Owner: Workplace cell

Author: Workplace Cell

Approved By PHE IMT

Issue date: January 2021

Version Number V04.00

Review date: As information changes and requires updating

Related Documents None

Document overview C-19 Resource Document for Workplace

Introduction

This is a resource to support Workplaces when managing COVID. Please read through this document carefully. There are several documents in this resource pack.

Documents included:

  • actions for suspected and confirmed cases
  • contact definition and actions for contacts
  • frequently asked questions
  • template Letters
  • resources in different languages

Please be aware that national guidelines and advice are subject to change due to the ongoing research and the current state of COVID-19 levels in the country.

Always check the links for the most up to date guidance and advice. The guidance in this packs runs through what to do if you have suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 in your workplace and frequently asked questions regarding COVID-19 in workplace settings.

Find guidance on making your workplace COVID-19 secure:

We ask that you contact your local environmental health officer (EHO) or the Health and Safety Executive (depending on who is your enforcing authority) to update them on the situation and ask for further advice about assessing and managing the risks of COVID-19 in your workplace. These are based within District Councils, please enter your workplace postcode here to find yours.

This guidance is primarily aimed at non health care settings. Find information on Infection Prevention and Control in health and social care settings. If you have further questions, please contact us and quote your reference number.

Kind Regards Public Health England South East

This pack is adapted from the one created by The London Coronavirus Response Cell with additions from PHE SE

Actions for suspected case, 1 confirmed case, 2+cases

Type of case

Employee with COVID-19 symptoms, no COVID-19 test.

Workplace Action

If in work:

  • send employee home. They should take private transport, wear a face covering and maintain social distancing on their journey home. They should isolate at home with their household and be tested - book a test or phone 119

Not at work:

  • clean area they have worked in.
  • advise the employee to get tested 
  • advise they must isolate for 10 days from onset of symptoms - household contacts for 10 days. Date of onset of symptoms is day “0” so the isolation period starts from this date and for 10 whole days after this. So, if you became symptomatic on 1 January you should isolate for ten whole days after this, up until 11 January and come out of isolation on 12 January

Once tested:

Positive – continue to self -isolate for the 10 whole days after symptom onset and if they no longer have a temperature and feel well, they can return to work on day 11. You should identify workplace contacts (see contacts section)

Negative – They may return to work if they are well as long as they are not isolating as contacts of confirmed cases. The employee should NOT attend work between symptom onset and test date.

Type of case

Employee with positive COVID-19 test (with or without symptoms)

Workplace Action

If the case has attended work in the 2 days before symptoms started or test date (if no symptoms) or 10 days after the workplace must:

  1. ensure confirmed case remains off work for 10 days from onset of symptoms - or from test date if no symptoms. They can return to work after the 10 days if they are feeling well and have not had a high temperature in the previous 48 hours (if they still have a cough or anosmia (loss of smell or taste) they may return to work).
  2. clean the area the case was working in
  3. identify workplace contacts - see contacts section for actions to take. Contact the self-isolation service hub (see details in contacts section)
  4. review your infection, prevention and control measures especially if multiple contacts have been identified. This includes reviewing your COVID-19 secure measures such as social distancing
  5. inform your local health protection team or your local environmental health team if you are concerned you have a serious outbreak connected to the workplace, for example, 10% of your workforce affected, if the situation worsens considerably, if there are any hospitalisations or complex cases, any media interest or any other concerns or queries that cannot be addressed through available guidance.

If your employee did not attended work the 2 days before the onset of symptoms or test date (if no symptoms) or in the 10 days afterwards and you have not had another case(s) in the workplace in the previous 14 days, no further action needs to be taken. This is still a good opportunity to review your COVID-19 infection, prevention and control measures.

Useful links

Symptoms - go to the NHS website for guidance on symptoms of coronavirus.

Testing - go to the NHS website for information on testing.

Cleaning - go to the GOV.UK website for guidance on cleaning

Contact Definition

Contacts are people who have come into contact with confirmed COVID-19 cases. Due to COVID-19 being a new disease, definitions and actions are subject to change.

Find current guidance. Please regularly check for updates on definitions and actions. 

What is meant by a ‘contact’

A ‘contact’ is a person who has been close to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 anytime from 2 days before the person was symptomatic up to 10 days from onset of symptoms (this is when they are infectious to others). In the absence of symptoms, you go from the date the test was taken.

For example, a contact can be: •

  • people who spend significant time in the same household as a person who has tested positive for COVID-19
  • sexual partners
  • a person who has had face-to-face contact (within one metre), with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, including:
    • being coughed on
    • having a face-to-face conversation within one metre
    • having skin-to-skin physical contact, or
    • contact within one metre for one minute or longer without face-to-face contact
  • a person who has been within 2 metres of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 for more than 15 minutes
  • a person who has travelled in a small vehicle with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or in a large vehicle or plane near someone who has tested positive for COVID-19

Please note:

  • If a workplace makes a decision to close in order to ensure COVID measures are in place, staff who are instructed to work from home for this reason would not need to self-isolate unless they meet the above formal contact definition above.
  • Where an interaction between 2 people has taken place through a Perspex (or equivalent) screen, this would not be considered sufficient contact, provided that there has been no other contact such as any of those indicated above.
  • PPE will only exempt staff from being considered a close contact if it is medical grade and being used by staff that have received appropriate training in infection prevention and control, this usually applies only to staff working in health and social care settings.
  • Contacts of a person who has tested positive for COVID-19 need to self-isolate at home because they are at risk of developing symptoms themselves in the next 14 days (particularly within the first 10 days) and could spread the virus to others before the symptoms begin.
  • If you are a contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, then you will be notified by the NHS Test and Trace service via text message, email or phone. If you are notified, please follow the guidance in this document closely. You may also be notified by Public Health England, the local authority or the workplace to self-isolate

Actions for Contacts

Confirmed case in the workplace with workplace contacts

Once you have identified close contacts (this may be other employees or visitors), they should be advised that they need to self-isolate for 10 days, after the date of exposure. For close contacts in the workplace this will be for 10 days from last date of contact (day “0”) with the infectious case (the exposure date). For example, if the close contact with a confirmed case took place on the 1 January the close contact should self-isolate for ten whole days after this up to and including 11 January and come out of isolation on 12 January

You should also inform the Self-isolation Service Hub on 020 3743 6715. This is a telephone line for employers and establishments to provide to NHS Test & Trace with a list of people who have been identified as contacts of a case of COVID-19 in your establishment, and therefore who must self-isolate.

It is critical that you contact the Self-isolation Service Hub as soon as you have had a positive case in your establishment (and every time thereafter) to log all contacts identified with NHS Test & Trace. This allows those contacts who are eligible to receive a self-isolation support payment from their Local Authority. Without the NHS Test & Trace reference, they cannot receive financial support.

You will need the CTAS ID (NHS Test and Trace ID) of the case (employee with a positive test), in order to be able to record the contacts from your establishment. This is an 8-digit alphanumeric code that the case will receive when they are contacted by NHS Test and Trace. Please ask your employee who tested positive to provide this to you as soon as they receive it. Find guidance on who may be eligible for financial support.

Confirmed case OUTSIDE of your workplace BUT with workplace contact(s)

Send contacts home, they must self-isolate for 10 days from their last contact with the case. If they develop Covid symptoms, advise they get tested - book a test or phone 119.

If one of your employees is identified as a contact through NHS Test and Trace, they must remain self-isolated for 10 days, even if they test negative.

You do not need to contact trace the contacts of contacts. If they have been told to isolate as they are a contact of a household member or a contact of someone outside the workplace they must continue to do so. You do not need to identify their contacts in the workplace unless your employee tests positive.

If a contact tests negative, they must still isolate for 10 days

Contact useful links

Testing - go to the NHS website for information on testing

Definition of contact - go to the GOV.UK website

 

COVID-19 Workplace FAQs

About this FAQ

The advice in the FAQ is up-to-date as January 2021 but guidance is likely to keep changing. Please read through the guidance carefully. Only use live links to the websites for guidance, do not print any documents as guidance is being constantly updated. Please also note the answers are based on national guidance but we're currently in a national lockdown and therefore some businesses will not currently be able to operate due to the restrictions in place. Please see specific guidance below on this. Please refer to the government website for regular updates on these.

COVID-19-Secure

Where can I find information and guidance on making my business safe and COVID-19-secure?

Working safely during coronavirus

Coronavirus working safely

Lockdown/Tier restrictions

Please see guidance on the new national restrictions. The guidance outlines which businesses and venues must close or can remain open.

If you have any further queries about how the guidance applies to your situation please contact the Cabinet Office who are responsible for the guidance at publiccorrespondence@cabinetoffice.gov.uk.

Guidance for businesses on working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19). If you have any further queries about this guidance please contact the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy who are responsible at enquiries@beis.gov.uk.

QR code

Do I need to display a QR code and if so how do I generate one?

If your business or venue falls into one of the sectors or categories that should provide a customer log, then you must now display an NHS QR code poster at your venue.

This applies if you provide:

  • hospitality services, including pubs, bars, restaurants and cafés
  • tourism and leisure services, including hotels, museums, cinemas and amusement arcades
  • close contact services, including hairdressers, barbershops and tailors
  • facilities provided by Local Authorities, including community centres, libraries and village halls

Information on which venues should display QR code.

Information about how to create a coronavirus NHS QR code for your venue.

If you have any further questions about this, please contact the QR code support: Telephone: 0800 540 4900 Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm

COVID-19 Case/s at work

What happens if one of my employees has symptoms or signs of COVID-19?

  1. Your employee should go home quickly and directly. If they must use public transport, they should try to keep away from other people and catch coughs and sneezes in a tissue and wear a face-covering.
  2. They should stay at home and self-isolate (with their household).
  3. They should book a test through the government testing website.
  4. While they are waiting for the test result only the case and their household need to selfisolate.
  5. If the COVID-19 test is positive – they should continue to self-isolate for 10 days from start of their symptoms (and household members continue to isolate for 10 days). Date of onset of symptoms is day “0” so they need to isolate for ten days after this and come out of isolation on day 11. They need to engage with NHS Test and Trace process.
  6. If the COVID-19 test is negative – they no longer need to isolate, unless they have been told that they are a contact of a confirmed case in which case they should isolate for 10 days.

Find more workplace guidance.

What happens if one of my employees tests positive for COVID-19

  1. Ensure the member of staff is self-isolating at home for 10 days from the onset of symptoms. They should only return to the workplace on day 11 if their symptoms have gone or they just have a cough or a loss of smell/taste. If they still have a high temperature after 10 days, they should stay at home and seek medical advice.
  2. They should not be at work. If they have come into work, they should be told to go home and not use public transport. If not in their own private car they should keep a 2m distance where possible and wear a face covering.
  3. Their household should self-isolate for 10 days from the onset of the case’s symptoms.
  4. The case should also cooperative with NHS Test and Trace. Anyone who is identified as being a 'close contact' of the individual during the time when they were potentially infectious will be asked to self-isolate for 10 days by NHS test and trace.
  5. It is also important that you check if any employees are close contacts during the infectious period (2 days before onset or date of test if asymptomatic). Any close contacts you identify should be added to the NHS Test and Trace system. In order to do this the employer should ask the case for their CTAS (NHS Test and Trace) ID number. This is the number the case receives when contacted by NHS Test and Trace after receiving a positive result. Once the employer has collated a list of close contacts they should call the Self Isolation Service Hub (details below). This also means that these contacts are able to receive a self-isolation support payment if they are eligible.
  6. People who are contacts do not need to be tested for COVID-19 unless they have symptoms, but they must self-isolate

Find more information on how long to self isolate on the NHS website.

When can the employee who tested positive return to work?

  1. They can return to work on day 11 after their symptoms started (or day 11 after their test haven't had any symptoms) as long as they are well enough and do not have a temperature. Date of symptom onset or date of test if they don’t have symptoms counts as day “0”.
  2. They may still have a cough or loss of smell and taste for some weeks but this does not mean they are still infectious.
  3. Note that some people develop symptoms after they take the test – in this case they need to isolate for 10 days from the day that their symptoms started, not test date

Does the employee need to take another test before returning to work?

No. PHE recommends that someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 should not normally be re-tested during their illness. Where the person is well and has completed their isolation period after the first positive result, they should not be a risk to others. However, anyone who tested positive and fully recovered, but then goes on to develop symptoms should self-isolate and be retested for COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses, as before.

What happens if more than one employee tests positive for COVID-19?

This may be a “cluster” or an “outbreak” in the workplace.

  1. Any staff members who have symptoms or have tested positive should go home quickly and directly and self-isolate as described above.
  2. You should arrange for the work area to be cleaned (following government guidelines).
  3. If you have been told about the test results from your staff members, you should contact your local Health Protection Team or Environmental Health Team as soon as possible who will be able to advise you on what actions to take and whether this is an outbreak.

Reporting an outbreak

Covid-19 early outbreak management

COVID-19 close contacts at work

How can I know if am ‘close contact' in the workplace what do I have to do?

A ‘contact’ is a person who has been close to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 anytime from 2 days before the person was symptomatic up to 10 days from onset of symptoms (this is when they are infectious to others). If the case was asymptomatic (for example did not display symptoms at the time of the test) the infectious period is considered to be 2 days before the date the test (swab) was taken and ten days afterwards (this ten days is extended if the case later develops symptoms during isolation period). Please refer to for detailed FAQs produced by the government on this topic regarding definition of close contacts:

  1. Anyone who meets the definition of a 'close contact' will be asked by NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate for 10 days. Only close contacts themselves need to isolate, not their entire household. 
  2. If you are unsure whether you are a close contact, wait for NHS Test and Trace to contact you and advise.

Am I still a ‘close contact' if I was wearing a mask or face covering?

Yes. Using a mask or face covering, whilst reducing the risk of transmission from the wearer, doesn't prevent you from getting COVID-19, and you would generally be considered a close contact' if I was wearing a mask or face covering? contact and required to self-isolate. The exception to this is in a health and social care settings where a surgical mask is worn as part of personal protective equipment by clinical/social care staff trained in infection prevention and control and donning and doffing PPE. You should advise any of your staff members who have been identified as being ‘close contacts' by NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate for 10 days.

Do ‘close contacts' need to be tested for COVID-19?

  1. No. People who are contacts do not need to be tested for COVID-19 unless they have symptoms, but they must self-isolate.
  2. If they remain symptom free at the end of the 10 days, they can return to work – no testing is required.
  3. Similarly, other employees in the workplace who have not been identified as “close contacts” do not require testing in the absence of symptoms. It is possible that your local PHE Health Protection Team or Local Authority may recommend testing of co-workers without symptoms in certain circumstances, but this is rare.

Self isolation Service Hub

What is the Self-Isolation Service Hub?

  1. The government has launched a new Self isolation Service Hub. This is a telephone line for Employers and establishments to provide to NHS Test and Trace with a list of people who have been identified as contacts of a case of COVID-19 in your establishment, and therefore who must self-isolate.
  2. It is important that you follow up and call 020 3743 6715 as soon as you have had a positive case in your establishment (and every time thereafter), because all contacts identified are then formally logged with NHS Test & Trace. This allows those contacts who are eligible to receive a self-isolation support payment from their Local Authority. Without the NHS Test & Trace reference, they cannot receive financial support.
  3. You will need the CTAS ID of the person who had a positive case, in order to be able to record the contacts from your establishment – please ask the employee/person at your establishment who tested positive to provide this to you as soon as they receive it, so you can call the hub as soon as possible to be able to support your employees and visitors at the earliest opportunity.
  4. Further guidance on who may be eligible and how to go about this.

Pubs and restaurant specific guidance

How can my establishment help with the “contact tracing” process?

  • Ask 1 member of every party who visits your premises to provide their contact details to assist NHS Test and Trace. Refuse entry to those who refuse to provide contact details.
  • Have a system in place to ensure that you can collect that information from your customers and visitors, and provide this data to NHS Test and Trace*, if it is requested. More information on what to collect and how it should be managed. Ideally, for every customer or group you should record the details of:
    • the lead member’s full name, contact details
    • the date, time of arrival
    • time of departure
    • the table or area they used. This should be kept for 21 days adhering to GDPR
  •  Keep a record of all staff working on your premises and shift times on a given day and their contact details.
  • Display an official NHS QR code poster from 24 September 2020, so that customers and visitors can ‘check-in’ using this option as an alternative to providing their contact details. Official NHS QR posters can be generated online (see further information below).

This information may be requested by your local Health Protection Team, Local Authority or NHS Test and Trace Currently there are restrictions on how pubs and restaurants operate. Please refer to the tier restrictions in your area.

A customer has informed us that they tested positive for COVID-19. What actions should I take?

  1.  Advise the customer to engage with NHS Test and Trace. The customer should inform NHS Test and Trace if they have attended a pub/restaurant while they were infectious.
  2. If your establishment is COVID-secure, it is unlikely that there will be any “close contacts” in your workplace other than the customer’s own group/party. Therefore, you do need to take any special actions.
  3. NHS Test and Trace or the local authority will contact you if any further measures are needed and if any staff need to isolate.

Multiple customers/groups of customers have informed us that they have tested positive for COVID-19. What actions should I take?

  1. Take details of the customers and advise them to engage with NHS Test and Trace and the customer should let NHS Test and Trace if they have attended your establishment while they were infectious.
  2. If you think there is an outbreak as a result of exposure in your setting (for example multiple cases across bubbles who have attended your establishment within 14 days) contact your local Health Protection Team or Environmental Health Team as soon as possible who will be able to advise you on what actions to take and whether this is an outbreak.

NHS COVID-19 App

A colleague has been contacted on the NHS COVID-19 App and told to self isolate what should they do?

If you have been in close contact with a confirmed case the App may notify you to advise self isolation. Go to the NHS website for questions, or to raise and issue about the NHS App.

If you require further information which is not covered in the FAQs, please contact the DHSC online or by telephone on: 0207 210 4850

The NHS COVID-19 app uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to understand the distance, over time, between app users. If someone tests positive for coronavirus (COVID-19), the app’s risk-scoring algorithm uses this data, along with the infectiousness of the individual testing positive, to make calculations about risk and work out whether a user should get an alert.

If you are storing your mobile in a locker you should disable Bluetooth to ensure that it is not detected within two metres of another mobile with the app whilst the mobile is not on your person.

Cleaning, ventilation and concerns

One or more of my employees has got confirmed COVID-19 – what do I need to do regarding cleaning?

It is important to have regular cleaning in place particularly of high contact areas regardless of whether you currently of cases of COVID-19 in the workplace.

Can we use desk fans?

Current government guidance and HSE guidance allows fans to be used in offices as long as the room is adequately ventilated, and they cleaned regularly.

I have a concern that my workplace is not implementin g social distancing measures. Who can I contact?

Employers and workers should always come together to resolve issues. If concerns still cannot be resolved, see below for further steps you can take. Where the enforcing authority, such as the Health and Safety Executive or your local authority, identifies employers who are not taking action to comply with the relevant public health legislation and guidance to control public health risks, they will consider taking a range of actions to improve control of workplace risks. For example, this would cover employers not taking appropriate action to socially distance, where possible. The actions the HSE can take include the provision of specific advice to employers through to issuing enforcement notices to help secure improvements.

How to raise a concern:

  • contact your employee representative
  • contact your trade union if you have one
  • contact ACAS

Contact HSE at:HSE COVID-19 enquiries Telephone: 0300 790 6787 (Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 10pm)

Social Distancing/PPE

Does my business need Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for work?

  1. The HSE guidance currently states that PPE for protection against coronavirus is generally only required for certain healthcare activities. In a non-clinical setting, there is no need to provide different PPE than you would normally have provided before the outbreak started.
  2. Whether or not PPE is required in a given workplace must be determined by the individual risk assessment. The government guidance have published guidance for those cleaning non-health care settings, those working in the management and care of deceased, and prisons and other prescribed places of detention and first responders on how these sectors should be using PPE.
  3. Currently, these are the only sectors outside of health and social care which that we believe have a clinical need for PPE. If after a risk-assessment you have determined that you may need PPE in your workplace, HSE will be the source of guidance and a lead into PPE providers. You may find all relevant PPE guidance in the newly created PPE guidance hub.
  4. From 24 September, it is compulsory for retail, leisure and hospitality staff to wear a face covering in areas that are open to the public and where they come or are likely to come within close contact of a member of the public. This includes shops, supermarkets, bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes, banks, estate agents, post offices and the public areas of hotels and hostels These are not classified as PPE are generally not manufactured to a recognised standard and not CE marked and do not provide a proven level of protection for work risks such as dust and spray. Face coverings are instead primarily intended to protect others, not the wearer, against the spread of infection because they cover the nose and mouth, which are the main confirmed sources of transmission of virus that causes coronavirus infection (COVID-19). Face coverings are not a replacement for the other ways of managing risk, including minimising time spent in contact

Find more guidance on face coverings.

It is not possible to follow 2m distancing at work – what can we do?

The government guidance states that where it’s not possible for people to be 2m apart, you should do everything practical to manage the transmission risk by:

  • considering whether an activity needs to continue for the business to operate
  • keeping the activity time involved as short as possible • using screens or barriers to separate people from each other
  • using back-to-back or side-to-side working whenever possible
  • staggering arrival and departure times • reducing the number of people each person has contact with by using ‘fixed teams or partnering’

Finally, if people must work face-to-face for a sustained period with more than a small group of fixed partners, then you will need to assess whether the activity can safely go ahead. No one is obliged to work in an unsafe work environment. In this assessment you should have particular regard to whether the people doing the work are especially vulnerable to COVID-19.

More guidance on social distancing.

Shielding/Isolation and Sick Pay

I must use public transport however I don’t feel safe. I am not sure if it is safe for me to go back to my place of work. Do I have to go back in to work?

There many sources of help and advice for people unsure of return to work:

  1. Your employer or line manager – the government guidance on working safely during the coronavirus outbreak sets out steps that employers must undertake to risk assess and secure the places of work.
  2. A trade union such as UNISON, if you are a member
  3. The Health and Safety Executive (0300 790 6787 - Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 10pm) ACAS - Helpline on 0300 123 1100
  4. Your local council
  5. Employers can also find support.

What if I am in in a “clinically vulnerable” or “shielding” group?

Guidance for those in the shielding group. Please note, this was updated on 15 October 2020 to reflect advice on protecting the clinically extremely vulnerable, based on the local COVID-19 alert level in your area. This advice is less restrictive than previous shielding advice.

Easy read shielding.

My employee must care for someone with COVID19 – do I need to pay them?

Employees are entitled to time off work to help someone who depends on them (a ‘dependent’) in an unexpected event or emergency. This would apply to situations related to coronavirus (COVID-19).

For example:

  • if they have children they need to look after or arrange childcare for because their school has closed
  • to help their child or another dependent if they’re sick or need to go into isolation or hospital There’s no statutory right to pay for this time off, but some employers might offer pay depending on the contract or workplace policy.

Employment law.

What to do if an employee needs time off work to look after someone.

Am I eligible to receive sick pay when isolating?

  • From 28 September those on lower incomes who cannot work from home and have lost income as a result will also be eligible for a new £500 Test and Trace Support Payment. The criteria for self-isolation payment is:

    • have been instructed to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, either because they’ve tested positive or are the close contact of a positive case •are employed or self-employed
    • are unable to work from home and will lose income as a result
    • are currently receiving Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit

It is therefore important that employers registers close contacts with the Self isolation Service Hub so that contacts can receive this payment if they are eligible

Those who are self-isolating because they or someone in their household is displaying symptoms of coronavirus or have been informed by NHS test and trace will be eligible for Statutory Sick pay (SSP).

You could get SSP if you’re self-isolating because:

You can also get SSP if both of the following apply:

Anyone not eligible to receive sick pay, including those earning less than an average of £118 per week, some of those working in the gig economy, or self-employed people, are able to claim Universal Credit and/or contributory Employment and Support Allowance. If notified by NHS test and trace to self-isolate they should also be eligible for the Test and Trace payment described above.

Further guidance for employers and employees:

Statutory sick pay

Employment law

ACAS can also provide further advice and guidance

Closure

Do I need to shut the workplace down?

PHE do not routinely advise workplaces to close and the decision regarding this should be based on the site-specific risk assessment undertaken by the employer. Further information on risk assessment can be accessed on the HSE website 

Your risk assessment should be reviewed whenever you have positive case/s in the workplace as this may change your COVID secure measures or your ability to operate safely.

However, if there is an outbreak that is complex or large then an incident team may discuss closure, with the managers of that workplace. On most occasions the workplace will not be closed.

Travel

A member of staff has travelled to a country not on the exempt list. If they take a COVID-19 test do they have to continue to self-isolate?

Everyone must self-isolate for 10 days if they have arrived from a country not on the exempt list. The date you leave the country not in the travel corridor is day “0”. If an employee decides to take a COVID-19 test after they return to the UK, if it is negative, they still must self-isolate as the disease can developed up to 14 days after contact with a COVID-19 positive case (symptoms most likely to develop within the first 10 days).

There a few professionals who are excluded. See the travel section in ‘links to resources’

 

 

Useful website links for the workplace

Food businesses

Reopening and adapting your food business during Covid-19.

Restaurants offering take away or delivery.

Construction and Other Outdoor Work

Construction and outdoor work.

Factories, Plants and Warehouses

Working safely at factories, plants and warehouses.

Lab and Research Facilities

Working safely at lab and research facilities

Offices and Contacts Centres

Working safely at offices and Contacts Centres.

Vehicles

Working safely with vehicles

Shops and Branches

Working safely in shops and branches

Other people’s homes (including deliveries)

Working safely in other people's homes.

Courts, Magistrate, Police

Courts and tribunals planning and preparation

Government guidance for first responders.

HSE website guidance for police.

 

Template Letters

The following letters are templates to be sent out to staff if you have confirmed cases or contacts in the workplace.

Please review each before you send them out and adapt for your own situation.

Letter A – Employee letter - Member of the workplace who tested positive for COVID-19 who DID NOT attend work while infectious

Letter B – For staff NOT identified as CONTACTS

Letter C – For staff identified as CONTACTS

Letter A

Letter A Employee letter - Member of the workplace who tested positive for COVID-19 who did not attend work while infectious

Check relevant for your situation/amend/delete as appropriate before sending

This is to be sent from the employer

Dear ……………..

A member of staff is being treated for confirmed novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and is currently receiving appropriate clinical care.

We are following the national guidance and have assessed that the risk to other employees is low as the case did not attend work when they were infectious and that at this stage we do not need to take any further action.

However, it is very important that you are aware of the common symptoms of COVID-19 and know what action to take if either you or a member of your family develop symptoms and how to avoid spreading the infection as detailed below: -

Symptoms of COVID-19 19 - The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:

  • New continuous cough, and/or
  • High temperature, and/or
  • A loss, or change, in your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)

For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness. If you do develop symptoms, you can seek advice from NHS 111 at NHS UK. Check if you have coronavirus symptoms or by phoning NHS111. Do not go directly to your GP or other healthcare environment. You will also need to arrange a test as advised at Coronavirus-COVID-19-getting-tested.

Should you develop symptoms please inform your manager.

How to stop COVID-19 spreading

There are things you can do to help reduce the risk:

  • Maintain social distancing should at all times, this includes all communal areas such as staff rooms, stock rooms, kitchens and corridors.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • Further information is available Staying Safe Outside Your Home

There is more information on the NHS website.

Please be assured we are following the national guidance about reducing the spread of infection in the workplace and will take further advice from PHE should we need to do so.

Yours sincerely

Workplace Manager/Occupational Health(name)

Letter B

Letter B – FOR STAFF NOT IDENTIFIED AS CONTACTS

Check relevant for your situation/amend/delete as appropriate before sending

This is to be sent from the employer

Dear Colleagues

Re: Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

We are aware of a confirmed case of COVID-19 in a member of staff/staff members.

Following national guidance, we have completed a risk assessment and identified a small number of people who have had close contact who need to stay at home for a period of 10 days since the date of their exposure. The date of exposure is day “0”. We have notified these individuals directly.

If you have not been advised directly that you are a close contact with the person (based on PHE guidelines), then the risk of catching COVID-19 from this person is very low.

However, it remains important that you are aware of the common symptoms of COVID-19 and know what action to take if either you or a member of your family develop symptoms and how to avoid spreading the infection as detailed below:

Symptoms of COVID-19 19 - The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:

  • New continuous cough, and/or
  • •High temperature, and/or
  • A loss, or change, in your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)

For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness. If you do develop symptoms, you can seek advice from NHS 111 at NHS UK. Check if you have coronavirus symptoms or by phoning NHS111. Do not go directly to your GP or other healthcare environment. You will also need to arrange a test as advised at Coronavirus-COVID-19-getting-tested

Should you develop symptoms please inform your manager.

How to stop COVID-19 spreading - There are things you can do to help reduce the risk

  • Maintain social distancing should at all times, this includes all communal areas such as staff rooms, stock rooms, kitchens and corridors.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • Further information is available Staying Safe Outside Your Home

Find more information here on the NHS website.

Please be assured we are following the national guidance (working-safely-during-coronavirus-COVID-19) about reducing the spread of infection in the workplace and will take further advice from PHE should we need to do so.

Yours sincerely,

<Manager's name/Occupational Health>

Letter C

Letter C – FOR STAFF IDENTIFIED AS CONTACTS

Check relevant for your situation/amend/delete as appropriate before sending

This is to be sent from the employer

Dear Colleague,

Re: Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

As you may be aware a member of staff has / members of staff have confirmed novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

We have completed a risk assessment identified you as a close contact with the confirmed case. In line with national guidance you are advised to self-isolate for a period of 10 days from last exposure to the individual. The date of exposure is day “0”. The last date of isolation will be . This means you must stay at home and not leave your house, including coming to work, even if you feel well. Other members of your household can continue normal activities provided you do not develop symptoms within the 10-day self-isolation period.

Please see the link to the PHE Staying at Home Guidance

In addition to following the guidance it is essential that you are aware of the common symptoms of COVID-19 and know what action to take if either you or a member of your family develop symptoms and how to avoid spreading the infection as detailed below: 

Symptoms of COVID-19 19 - The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:

  • New continuous cough, and/or
  • High temperature, and/or
  • A loss, or change, in your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)

For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness. If you do develop symptoms, you can seek advice from NHS 111 at NHS UK. Check if you have coronavirus symptoms or by phoning NHS111. Do not go directly to your GP or other healthcare environment. You will also need to arrange a test: Coronavirus-COVID-19-getting-tested. As soon as you develop symptoms the rest of your household should also self isolate and await your test result. You should also you inform your manager.

How to stop COVID-19 spreading - There are things you can do to help reduce the risk of spreading the virus

  • Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards 
  • Maintain social distancing and/or isolation in accordance with national guidelines

There is more information on the NHS website.

We will need to provide NHS Test and Trace with your details as you may be eligible for a self-isolation support payment. Further guidance about the criteria for this allowance.

Please be assured we are following the national guidance (working-safely-during-coronavirus-COVID-19) about reducing the spread of infection in the workplace and will take further advice from PHE should we need to do so.

Yours sincerely,

Manager name/ Occupational Health

Resources in Multiple Languages

General

Guidance for households with possible COVID-19 infection.

Available in:

  • Arabic
  • Bengali
  • simplified Chinese
  • traditional Chinese
  • French
  • Gujarati
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Punjabi
  • Urdu

Guidance for households with grandparents, parents and children living together where someone is at increased risk or has possible/confirmed COVID-19.

Available in:

  • Arabic
  • Bengali
  • simplified Chinese
  • traditional Chinese
  • French
  • Gujarati
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Punjabi
  • Urdu

Information on different Covid-19 related topics including symptoms and staying safe.

Information in 60 different languages (please note at the time of writing this has not been updated with the 10 day isolation period for contacts)

Food manufacturing businesses

This link contains a brief information sheet, which is designed to be easily-translatable at any site.

This can be put through the free-to-use translation software to turn out own materials for the workforce in whichever languages are spoken. It has been carefully written so that translation is relatively easily done. This link contains a range of already-translated materials for employees working in the food production context

This is the ‘overarching’ guidance that has been produced for food businesses. In it there are a number of links to other useful sources of information