Coronavirus Impact Updates

Showing 5 posts from July 2020.

What to Do When Your Employee Refuses to Return to Work Amid COVID-19?


The United States is now approximately four months out from when states and localities began to shelter-in-place due to the serious health concerns of COVID-19. Many employers initially scrambled to determine whether to furlough or terminate their employees, while others implemented work-from-home policies and procedures. Although most states have moved into phases two or three of reopening, the ever-growing number of positive COVID-19 cases presents ongoing hurdles for employers seeking to bring employees back into the workplace. So what happens if your employee refuses to return to work? 

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Business Waits for No One, Certainly Not Negative Tests: New CDC Guideline Obviate the Need for Retesting


Based on previous guidelines and advice, many business owners are telling employees who have tested positive for COVID-19, to not return to work until they test negative. Sometimes, this means waiting weeks and even months. There are numerous reasons contributing to the problem. First, some patients test positive for weeks after full recovery and no longer being contagious. Second, scheduling a test is getting harder and results are taking longer and longer. Third, the tests being used are still unreliable, with the "quick" ones having the highest rates of false positives and false negatives. In the meantime, businesses are seeing an uptick in business, but cannot fulfill orders or client needs because they have no workers. Some have even had to shut down. It is very surprising, then, that the CDC's new guideline saying a negative test is not necessary has flown under the radar.

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American Academy of Pediatrics Urges Schools to Open


The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) surprised everyone recently with guidance urging that all decisions for school this coming year “start with a goal of having students physically present in school.” The guidance recognized concerns about COVID-19, but cited “mounting evidence” that children and adolescents are less likely to be symptomatic and less likely to have severe problems from the virus. It also noted that “children may be less likely to become infected and to spread infection.” The AAP urges policymakers to balance mitigation efforts with “the known harms to children, adolescents, families, and the community by keeping children at home.”

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Reopening Schools, Fall 2020


Both the state of Georgia and the CDC have released guidance to help school authorities “determine their plans and strategies for reopening schools” in the fall, whatever of the status of the pandemic.  While neither document is binding, they will be important in establishing the standard of care for both independent and public schools.  The guidelines focus on the ability to open buildings and allow students to move freely, based on the degree of potential community spread. 

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Georgia COVID-19 Pandemic Business Safety Act


On June 26, 2020, the Georgia General Assembly passed the Georgia COVID-19 Pandemic Business Safety Act as one of the final bills to pass out of the legislature on the last day of the 2020 Legislative Session. The Act was written and considered in response to concerns of small businesses throughout Georgia concerning potential legal liability for COVID-19 claims against owners as the economy re-opens in Georgia. While this law has not yet been signed by the Governor, it is expected to be signed. The following is a summary of the highlights of the Act.

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