As organizations transition their employees back to campus over time, it’s crucial that they implement as many preventative measures as possible to enhance employee safety and minimize their exposure to other employees who may be infected with COVID-19. Many employers have already put a number of different controls and protocols in place to minimize exposure, such as screenings, requiring masks in the workplace, and redesigning their offices to promote social distancing. An additional but critical strategy employers are starting to introduce is workplace contact tracing, which identifies employees who have potentially been exposed to the coronavirus while in the office.
What is workplace contact tracing?
As our country moves forward, the goal of many companies is to bring large segments of employees back to work. To do this, it’s important to identify which employees may have COVID-19 and who has significant exposure to those individuals while in the office or on campus. That’s where workplace contact tracing comes in.
Currently, employers are approaching workplace contact tracing in different ways. Some have set up a program and are running it on their own, without support from an onsite healthcare partner. Others are working closely with their onsite partners to integrate workplace contact tracing programs into their wellness center’s workflow.
At Premise Health, our workplace contact tracing program supports the latter and includes the following steps.
- The onsite wellness center is informed that a member has a presumed or confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis and a workplace contact tracer is assigned to them. The contact tracer is the provider who will manage the member’s case from start to finish.
- The contact tracer then calls and interviews the member to determine their symptoms and who they have been in contact with.
- The contact tracer compiles a list of individuals the member has been in contact with as well as any other employees they frequently interact with at work. This is sourced by both the member and their manager.
- The contact tracer then calls all identified contacts to determine if they’re at risk of COVID-19 or not.
- If they determine there was no significant exposure, the process ends with that employee.
- If they determine there was significant exposure, the contact tracer will provide the employee with information on their Employee Assistance Program (EAP) if available, as well as counsel them on quarantining, social distancing, symptom monitoring, and optional testing. The employee will also be entered into our care navigation program and be referred to a Premise Health or community provider for further treatment. On day three, seven, and 14 of their quarantine, the contact tracer will check in with the employee to assess their progress.
Why is workplace contract tracing necessary?
Workplace contact tracing is most valuable when both the employer and healthcare partner collaborate closely, which means having the right partner in place is key. Employees should feel confident the office is safe and adding workplace contact tracing to your current measures is another way to reinforce that their safety is a top priority for you, the employer. There is no one solution that will completely protect them, but workplace contact tracing is a great tool to understand the risk to your population and potential transmission to others, while safely bringing employees back to work. A partnership with Premise Health means access to high-quality solutions, including a site-specific workplace contact tracing process.
Premise Health is committed to providing a seamless and safe return to work experience through our workplace contact tracing, screening, testing, and care navigation products. As the COVID-19 outbreak evolves, our teams can play a critical role in providing continued support and access to high-quality healthcare.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a rapidly changing and fluid situation, and our products are continually evolving to adapt and help your organization strategically navigate this challenging time.
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