February 2, 2023
CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) PROCEDURE - updated 16/05/2022
This policy has been updated to reflect the Scottish Government’s guidance around SARS-CoV2 (COVID-19), for face-to-face working health and social care staff.
What you must do
The Scottish Government’s guidance states that health and social care staff with a client-facing role should continue to take two lateral flow (LFD) tests each week. Those in office-based roles should follow the guidance for the general public.
Forward the results of the LFD tests to the Edge Group HR Manager.
Strictly adhere to all public health advice. Continue to use face coverings in public places if you feel this is necessary, and ensure good ventilation where possible.
If you have symptoms of respiratory illness
If you have symptoms of a respiratory illness and high temperature, or you do not feel well enough to work, stay at home and avoid contact with others.
Take an LFD test as soon as possible and report the result to the HR Manager.
If the result is negative you can work if you are clinically well enough to do so.
If you work with clients who are at higher risk of infection, discuss this with Management, who will carry out a risk assessment.
If you are still displaying symptoms when you return to work, discuss this with the HR Manager. A risk assessment will be undertaken.
Return to routine LFD testing when you return to work.
If you return a positive test, do not carry out lateral flow tests for 28 days from the date of the positive test.
If you test positive for COVID-19
You should not work for at least 5 days, whether or not you have symptoms.
You can return to work when you have two negative LFD tests, 24 hours apart.
The first LFD test should only be taken 5 days after the day your symptoms started (or the day your first positive test was taken if you do not have symptoms). Day 0 is the date of the start of symptoms or the date of the positive test if asymptomatic).
If both LFD test results are negative, you may return to work immediately after the second negative result, provided you meet the criteria below:
You feel well enough to work, and do not have a high temperature.
A risk assessment is done and consideration given to redeployment (if you work with individuals whose immune system means that they are at higher risk of serious illness despite vaccination), until 10 days after your symptoms started/first positive test.
You comply with infection control procedures and use personal protective equipment (PPE).
If the day-5 LFD test is positive, continue to test daily until you have two negative results, 24 hours apart. If you return a positive test on the 10th day, discuss this with the HR Manager, who will undertake a risk assessment to facilitate a return to work.
If you feel well enough to return to work but still have respiratory symptoms, speak to the HR Manager who will do a risk assessment.
Once you return to work, do not undertake twice-weekly LFD testing until 28 days from the date of your initial positive test.
If you are a close contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case
People who live in the same household as someone with COVID-19 are at a high risk of becoming infected because they are most likely to have prolonged close contact. People who stayed overnight in the household of someone with COVID-19 are also at high risk.
It can take up to 10 days for infection to develop after exposure. It is possible to pass on COVID-19 to others, even with no symptoms.
If you have had overnight or household contact with someone who has had a confirmed COVID-19 test, continue with twice-weekly asymptomatic LFD testing.
In addition, discuss ways to minimise risk of onward transmission with Management. This may include:
redeployment to lower risk areas for patient/client-facing staff, especially if you work with clients/family members who are at higher risk of serious illness;
moving to online contact with clients if this is appropriate;
limiting close contact with other people, especially in crowded, enclosed or poorly ventilated spaces.
If you attend work, they must continue to adhere to infection control and prevention measures and wear appropriate PPE.
If you develop symptoms, follow the advice outlined above.
In clients’ comes, follow the following infection control measures:
Wash hands or use hand sanitiser on entry, exit, and at regular intervals. Follow Healthcare Protection Scotland advice: https://www.hps.scot.nhs.uk/a-to-z-of-topics/hand-hygiene/.
Use a face covering should you need to do so in indoor spaces and public transport, or if the client asks you to. Also do so if you have been a close contact and are cleared to work in person.
Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue (and dispose of this immediately) or the crook of the elbow, to avoid particle dispersal. Clean your hands after this.
Avoid hand contact with your eyes, nose and mouth wherever possible.
Physical distancing of 1 metre from other individuals/groups as much as possible, particularly indoors and for outdoor groups.
Ensure rooms are well ventilated by opening windows.
Edge Autism Ltd has a plentiful supply of Personal Protective Equipment (single-use face coverings, gloves, aprons, and alcohol-based hand sanitiser). Staff must ensure that they maintain a sufficient stock of these items for their professional use. We also hold a supply of lateral flow tests.
Some clients may be exempt from wearing face coverings. They can apply to https://exempt.scot/ for an exemption card. Staff must be confident in their ability to advocate for such clients if challenged, without breaching confidentiality.
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