What to Do If An Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

Caesar Djavaherian, MD, MS, FACEP
July 15, 2020
2 Minutes

The team at Carbon Health has been on the frontlines since the beginning of this pandemic and is well-versed in hygiene and safety protocols. Our COVID Ready program leverages our extensive healthcare provider knowledge and expertise to offer the most comprehensive set of tools to maximize workplace safety and productivity. 

And while prevention is key, preparation in the event of an exposure or positive test is just as vital. 

What to do if an employee tests positive:

  • Have HR contact the employee immediately and verify their diagnosis. Employers should make it clear to employees they will not be discriminated against or retaliated against because of the diagnosis and, while information about the diagnosis may be shared with others, the employee will remain anonymous.
  • Develop a list of ANY possible co-workers and clients the employee has had close contact with (within 6 feet) during the past two weeks and alert them by phone or email.
  • If working on-site, send impacted employees home immediately and disinfect all workspaces thoroughly.
  • Administer any applicable leave laws, including, but not limited to, new FFCRA leave and/or California PSL, FMLA, STD, or possibly Workers Compensation for the COVID-19 positive employee. Also, provide benefit information, including required pamphlets.
  • Based on exposure and risk, assess the impact of closing your place of business; determine whether remote work is possible, set up systems/equipment, and create a go-forward plan.
  • After alerting those individuals who were in close contact with the infected and decide how you will communicate this event to the rest of your team. Have CDC guidelines and information on symptoms available to all employees.
  • Protect confidentiality. Do not share the names of positive individuals or those in close contact.
  • Follow CDC guidance on the length of isolation and returning to work. Check with your county in the event additional local measures are in place. Contact your local public health agency for additional information.
  • Consult CDC, OSHA, and CAL-OSHA business guidance.
  • After 7 days following a positive test with continually decreasing symptoms, 3 days of no fever, and 2 negative tests taken at least 24 hours apart, any previously positive tested employee can be cleared to go back to work.


Peace of mind is a priority at Carbon Health. Our COVID Ready program was designed to minimize risk in the workplace by addressing every possible situation. COVID Ready bridges the gap between the impossible (guaranteed zero risk) and a realistic level of safety by solving problems that could come up while ensuring your employees have access to care.


Start your COVID Ready program today to minimize risk now and down the road.

Caesar Djavaherian, MD, MS, FACEP

Caesar Djavaherian, MD FACEP, is the Chief Clinical Innovation Officer at Carbon Health. 


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