MMCA COVID-19 Update & Resources XVI April 10, 2020 Check our website for frequent updates.
Safety Practices for Critical Infrastructure Workers Who May Have Had Exposure to COVID-19
The CDC has released interim guidance on safety practices for critical infrastructure workers who may have had exposure to a person with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.
A potential exposure means being a household contact or having close contact within 6 feet of an individual with confirmed or suspected COVID-19. The timeframe for having contact with an individual includes the period of time of 48 hours before the individual became symptomatic.
Critical Infrastructure workers who have had an exposure but remain asymptomatic should adhere to the following practices prior to and during their work shift:
Pre-Screen: Employers should measure the employee’s temperature and assess symptoms prior to them starting work. Ideally, temperature checks should happen before the individual enters the facility.
Regular Monitoring: As long as the employee doesn’t have a temperature or symptoms, they should self-monitor under the supervision of their employer’s occupational health program.
Wear a Mask: The employee should wear a face mask at all times while in the workplace for 14 days after last exposure. Employers can issue facemasks or can approve employees’ supplied cloth face coverings in the event of shortages.
Social Distance: The employee should maintain 6 feet and practice social distancing as work duties permit in the workplace.
Disinfect and Clean Work Spaces: Clean and disinfect all areas such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electronic equipment routinely.
If the employee becomes sick during the day, they should be sent home immediately. Surfaces in their workspace should be cleaned and disinfected. Information on persons who had contact with the ill employee during the time the employee had symptoms and 2 days prior to symptoms should be compiled. Others at the facility with close contact within 6 feet of the employee during this time would be considered exposed.
Additional information about identifying critical infrastructure during COVID-19 can be found on Executive Order 20-33.
HVACR-Plumbing Best Practices During COVID-19
Beyond site safety precautions what should a service contractor be doing during COVID-19? Mechanical Service Contractors of America have published best practices for HVACR-Plumbing contractors. Check out the best practices and consider actions like:
Developing a daily safety checklist for all service techs before they are dispatched to ensure they have no coronavirus symptoms nor have been near anyone with the virus.
Order long lead-time service parts like spray pumps and tower motors now to have on hand.
Update emergency contact lists for all employees – you may need to get in touch with all employees very quickly.
If you have employees who need assistance with stress, financial, or familial issues refer them to HealthPartners Employee Assistance Program at 866-326-7194 or text US HEAP and your question to 919-324-5523 or log on to hpeap.com (website password “ptsmn”).