The federal government has provided new guidelines for essential employees battling novel coronavirus (COVID-19) that will make it easier for them to return to work after being exposed to the virus.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced this week that essential workers who have been exposed to COVID-19 can go back to work if they are asymptomatic without having to wait out the originally mandated 14-day self-quarantine.
Robert Redfield, the director of the CDC, said that employees such as healthcare and food supply workers will be permitted to return back to work under certain circumstances as the government looks to start reopening the country and economy.
"One of the most important things we can do is keep our critical workforce working,” he said during a news briefing.
Nationally, there have been 458,445 confirmed COVID-19 cases, which resulted in 16,312 deaths. Globally, there have been 1,586,326 cases that led to 68,366 deaths.
According to the CDC, workers returning to work should take their temperature before work, wear a face mask at all times and practice social distancing. They should NOT stay at work if they become sick, share headsets or objects used near the face, or congregate in crowded spaces.
Employers have also been instructed to increase the frequency of sanitizing commonly touched surfaces, increase air exchange in buildings, send sick employees home immediately and test the use of face masks to ensure they don’t interfere with the workflow.
“The numbers are changing and they’re changing rapidly and soon we’ll be over that curve. We’ll be over the top and we’ll be headed in the right direction. I feel strongly about that,” President Donald Trump said about the virus. “I can’t tell you in terms of a date, (cases could) start going up if we’re not careful.”
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