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COVID-19 COVID-19 businesses and employers

COVID-19 latest advice and sign up to updates for businesses

COVID-19 advice for businesses  

Staff with symptoms of Covid 19 and other respiratory infections   

People with symptoms of COVID-19 or other respiratory infections are advised to try to stay at home and avoid contact with others if they have a high temperature or do not feel well enough to attend work or carry our normal activities. They are advised to resume normal activities once their temperature is resolved and they feel well enough to do so.    

The symptoms of Covid 19 have now been officially widened to 10 and include:   

  • continuous cough   

  • high temperature, fever or chills   

  • loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell   

  • shortness of breath   

  • unexplained tiredness, lack of energy   

  • muscle aches or pains that are not due to exercise   

  • not wanting to eat or not feeling hungry   

  • headache that is unusual or longer lasting than usual   

  • sore throat, stuffy or runny nose   

  • diarrhoea, feeling sick or being sick   

It is particularly important to avoid close contact with anyone who is known to be at higher risk of becoming seriously unwell if they are infected with Covid-19 and other respiratory infections, especially those whose immune system means that they are at higher risk of serious illness, despite vaccination.  
 
Any symptomatic staff should be directed to follow government guidance on the.gov website 

This includes the following advice if leaving home with mild symptoms (no high temperature)   

  The following actions will reduce the chance of passing on your infection to others:   

  • wearing a well-fitting face covering made with multiple layers or a surgical face mask   

  • avoiding crowded places such as public transport, large social gatherings, or anywhere that is enclosed or poorly ventilated   

  • taking any exercise outdoors in places where you will not have close contact with other people   

  • covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze; wash your hands frequently with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser after coughing, sneezing and blowing your nose and before you eat or handle food; avoid touching your face  

Staff testing positive   

People who test positive for COVID-19 (for example through private testing or if they have access to tests as they are classed as vulnerable) are advised to try to stay at home and avoid close contact with other people for 5 days from the day the test was taken.    

It is particularly important to avoid close contact with anyone who is known to be at higher risk of becoming seriously unwell if they are infected with COVID-19 and other respiratory infections, especially those whose immune system means that they are at higher risk of serious illness, despite vaccination.  

If they do need to leave home the same considerations as for those who are symptomatic should be in place as described above.  

Close Contacts  

Household and overnight contacts are advised to take precautions (such as avoiding contact with those who are at high risk) for 10 days. This is because household and overnight contacts are at the highest risk of becoming infected.    

Outbreaks in the workplace  

There is no longer a requirement to report workplace outbreaks of respiratory infections to your local public health team.   

However, if you experience high levels of people with respiratory symptoms in your workplace the actions detailed above here and in the government guidance on reducing respiratory infections in the workplace will help to reduce the spread, so they should be promoted and applied more rigorously.   

The main pillars of control now focus on:   

  • Encouraging and enabling vaccination   

  • Letting fresh air in   

  • Maintaining a clean workplace   

Employers and businesses should continue identifying poorly ventilated spaces and take steps to improve fresh air flow. Assessment of fresh air (ventilation) in the workplace (hse.gov.uk) 

Risk Assessments  

While there is no longer a requirement for all employers to explicitly consider COVID-19 in their statutory health and safety risk assessments, it is important that as a business, organisation or an employer you continue to comply with your legal obligations relating to health and safety, employment and equality duties.  Employers may choose to continue to cover COVID-19 in their risk assessments.   

Employers that specifically work with COVID-19, such as laboratories, must continue to undertake a risk assessment that considers COVID-19.  
 
Employers should continue to comply with the requirements for cleaning, ventilation and welfare facilities in the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 or the Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 to control occupational health and safety risks.  

Useful Resources  

  • Acas - has some great advice and business resources   

  • HSE Guidance - is also a good source of information and can be found here: 

Manchester’s free confidential health helpline

If you or your employees have any covid concerns call the helpline free on 0800 840 3858 or text: 07890 036 892.

Open 7 days a week 9am-5pm.  

This is a free telephone service that can help anyone who:  

  • Has questions about Covid-19  

  • Needs help to book their Covid-19 Vaccination  

  • Needs help with Covid-19 testing  

  • Has questions on when to isolate  

Advice is provided by a nursing team. Translation service available.    
For further information on Covid vaccination manchester.gov.uk/getmyjab 

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