What happens if a worker in Cebu City tests positive of COVID during GCQ?
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City government has advised members of the private sector to implement strict health standards in their operations as the city transitions to a more relaxed general community quarantine (GCQ) this Monday, June 1.
Aside from ‘strongly encouraging’ employers to have their workers to be tested for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the city has also come up with several measures to ensure the health safety in firms, which are allowed to operate under the ‘new normal’.
Mayor Edgardo Labella on Sunday, May 31, issued and signed Executive Order (EO) No. 79 that would serve as the guidelines for the city as it was about to shift to the ‘new normal’ this Monday, June 1.
Section 8 of EO No. 79 discusses the need for business establishments allowed to reopen under GCQ to closely monitor the health status of their workers, and observe health protocols within their premises.
It has also ordered companies to suspend their operations in case one of their employees is confirmed to have been afflicted with the disease as the first step to contain and stop the transmission of the virus within the workplace.
“For safety reasons, in the unfortunate event that an employee is found positive for COVID-19, the business establishment shall immediately suspend operations and implement containment and disinfection protocols, test all employees that have exposure to the COVID-19 positive employee at the expense of the employer,” read portions of the document.
These firms must also secure clearances from the City Health Department (CHD) and the city’s Business Permit and Licensing Office (BPLO) before they will resume their operations.
“In addition, as part of monitoring, employers must screen their returning employees or workers for influenza-like symptoms and those that have a relevant history of travel or exposure coming from areas that have high COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) cases, to prevent possible infection,” the city directed.
Under a GCQ, more business establishments are expected to reopen after taking a two-month break due to threats of COVID-19 that has infected over 2,000 individuals in Cebu City as of May 30. /dbs
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