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Health Monitoring and Surveillance are Critical

Monitoring and surveillance are critical in this situation. Do what you can to stay healthy? If you feel sick, whether you’re an employee, a visitor, or a resident, speak up and stay home. But here’s what to do if someone in your community presents with a respiratory illness.

Remind yourself, staff, and residents to get plenty of rest; have regular, nutritious meals; and stay away from others who have cold and flu symptoms. By practicing self-care, you’re taking the best action against this virus.

Encourage residents to report any illness they are experiencing, and staff should check residents for symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath every day.

Post notices that visitors who are sick in any way should refrain from visiting and work with staff on keeping in touch by phone or video calls.

Add signage at the front desk entrance reminding everyone to wash hands, use hand sanitizer, and practice respiratory hygiene.

Make sure staff gets the message to monitor and report any symptoms they or the  residents have. Review policies on sick leave and time off. You may want to check in at the beginning of work shifts to ask how staff are feeling, remind them to keep watching for symptoms among residents and visitors, and remind them of sick leave policies.

This applies to any temporary, on-call employment services and third-party health care providers as well–review policies with the agency and in person, when any other worker  arrives. Keeping an infectious disease out of the community is worth the time.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration guidelines are the same as those found in this toolkit but having them on hand if there’s a workplace issue question could be useful.

 

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