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Covid-19 Guidance for Employers

 

The information contained in this document has been summarised from gov.uk, The Health and Safety Executive and ACAS. This document is designed as a useful guide and does not proport comprehensive or legal advice. Note that Mymyne Ltd do not have legal expertise in this area, and in this fluid situation guidance is continually being updated. Links to the sources of information have been provided, it is strongly advised that these should be used to ensure information is up to date and that you contact a professional advisor to discuss these areas. 

 

Employer health and safety obligations in the coronavirus outbreak. 

Employees must make a report under RIDDOR (The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013) when:  

An unintended incident at work has led to someone’s possible or actual exposure to coronavirus. This must be reported as a dangerous occurrence. An example of a dangerous occurrence would be a lab worker accidentally smashing a glass vial containing coronavirus, leading to people being exposed. See RIDDOR regulation 7 schedule 2 section 10

A worker has been diagnosed as having COVID 19 and there is reasonable evidence that it was caused by exposure at work. This must be reported as a case of disease. See RIDDOR regulation 9 (b)

A worker dies as a result of occupational exposure to coronavirus from their work and this is confirmed as the likely cause of death by a registered medical practitioner. See RIDDOR regulation 6 (2)

For more details see Health and Safety Executive Guidelines here  

In general employers have a duty to take steps that are reasonably necessary to ensure the health, safety and welfare of all their employees. The following steps should be considered specifically with Coronavirus in mind. 

Provide regular updates on actions being taken to reduce risks of exposure to Coronavirus in the workplace.

Provide accessible hand washing facilities and encourage everyone to do so regularly. In addition, provide hand sanitiser and tissues, and encourage everyone to use them.

Provide information on hygiene, hand washing and safe food practices.

Regularly clean communal areas, including door handles, kitchens, toilets, hot-desk keyboards/equipment, phones and desks.

Advise employees to follow Social Distancing Guidance and those at high risk to follow Shielding Guidance for extremely vulnerable people. 

Ensure employees know how to spot symptoms of COVID-19 and are clear on the relevant procedures if someone in the workplace is potentially infected.

Ensure employees with Coronavirus symptoms observe government advice on self-isolation.

Carry out risk assessments for vulnerable people relating specifically to the risk of exposure to individuals who are infected with the virus.

Where people need to attend a place of work, consider ways of reducing their risk of infection such as staggering start times for employees.

Keep up to date with the latest government coronavirus advice on GOV.UK.

Detailed government advice to employers and businesses can be found here

 

What should an employer do if an employee at work starts displaying symptoms?

The current government guidance is that if anyone becomes unwell with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature in the business or workplace they should be sent home and advised to follow the stay at home guidance.

As of April 20th do not necessarily need to close as a result of an employees displaying symptoms, but government cleaning guidelines should be followed. These vary according to the nature of the workplace and can be found here

 

What should an employee do at work if they start displaying symptoms?

Tell their employer immediately and go home

Avoid touching anything

Cough or sneeze into a tissue and put it in a bin, or if they do not have tissues, cough and sneeze into the crook of their elbow

Use a separate bathroom from others, if possible

Observe government advice on self-isolation

If they need clinical advice, the affected employee should use the following resources 

England NHS 111 coronavirus symptom checker or calling 111

Scotland NHS inform Scotland symptom checker

Wales  NHS Direct Wales symptom checker

If someone is seriously ill or life is at risk, by calling 999

 

Checking of symptoms by employers

An employer can't require an employee, worker or visitor to their premises to undergo a medical examination without their consent. This includes taking temperatures. On a practical level, the majority of people may be willing to give their consent or self-diagnose particularly if this process is part of a corporate response to COVID19 designed to keep employees safe. 

 

About Mymyne

Mymyne are a team of data experts. Usually we work with advertisers to help them improve targeting by tracking and understanding consumer behaviour. In the current circumstances we’ve deployed our expertise and resources to create software which uses the same technology to help employers keep employees safe. 

Apollo is designed to provide employers with a simple way to deploy the first level of care to keep employees informed and safe without direct medical intervention. We can work with your Occupational Health provider to integrate Apollo with the COVID19 testing and containment policies you deploy as the next stage of protection. 

 

About Apollo 

Apollo consists of an Admin module accessible via the web and a user module available on iOS or Android. 

 

User App (iOS / Android)

Tailored news feed – content can be from a variety of sources including corporate communications.

Up to date information on symptoms. 

Support and advice.

Testing scheduling*

Contact numbers and urls

Daily self-diagnosis.

*Via corporate OH provider. 

 

Admin Dashboard

Locations – configurable to show regional (WHO) statistics and corporate self-diagnosed statistics at office level. 

Demographics

Job type

Tested vs untested

Self Reporting vs not reporting 

Location specific alerts – Case in your office. Emergency. 

Manage news feed.