Common challenges

COVID-19 Question Series: A Q&A Update of What We Know So Far

March 28, 2020

We received many questions during our recent webinar on COVID-19. In case you missed it, you’ll find a link to the recording at the bottom of this article. In a difficult time like this, we wanted to make sure the answers to these challenging questions were available, so we’ve created a multi-part question series on our blog to help ensure employers and HR professionals have access to the information they need. We will continue to post these COVID-19 Question Series articles, so keep your eye on our blog and subscribe for updates.

In this article, we address questions we’ve received about what we know so far, from government updates to reporting and self-isolation.

How much self-isolation is necessary? For example: I feel fine. My spouse feels fine. However, my spouse’s co-worker has been diagnosed with COVID-19. My spouse should self-isolate, but do I need to?

Based on all of the information from the World Health Organization and the government of Canada, you should also self-isolate for 14 days. Symptoms of COVID-19 could be mild and not noticeable, but an individual can still be contagious. In addition, you may not experience symptoms for two to 14 days after exposure. During self-isolation, if either you or your spouse develop symptoms associated with COVID-19, remain at home and contact your local health agency.

For information on how to contact your local health agency, click the link below:

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/symptoms/provincial-territorial-resources-covid-19.html

 

How long will the government ask employees to work from home where possible?

We don’t know, and it will likely vary from province to province.

In Ontario, the government has announced that widespread working from home should last until April 6. This date aligns with the date when schools were initially expected to resume. However, the Ontario government also announced that the shutdown at daycares and schools will likely be longer. Based on this information, the period for work from home may be extended.

In Quebec, the government has already announced that schools and daycares must close until May 1 and non-essential businesses until April 13.

With this information, it is likely that working from home will continue across Canada into April.

Businesses should start considering whether, if the government announces a return to work but schools and daycares are still closed, employees with children can continue to work from home. In both British Columbia and Alberta, the government has announced that schools are closed indefinitely, which may mean until September.

 

Do we need to report to health authorities if a client is diagnosed with COVID-19?

You should contact your local health agency to determine what the business needs to do.

For information on how to contact your location health agency, click the link below:

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/symptoms/provincial-territorial-resources-covid-19.html

Get the webinar replay and more information

Click here to download the webinar replay and get answers to the top
questions about the coronavirus.

Download now

 

As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, keep checking back here.

We will continually update our blog as frequently as possible during this time to provide you with the resources and answers you need.

 

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