California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Updates Face Covering Guidance

May 10, 2021California

On May 3, 2021, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) updated its face covering guidance to align with the current CDC recommendations.

On May 5, 2021, Cal/OSHA updated the COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standards FAQs, including:

1. Updated language in the Outbreaks and the “Exposed Workplace” section – Q&A #12 answer. 

Q:  When must an employer exclude employees from work?

A:  Employers must exclude from work employees who are not fully vaccinated if they (1) are COVID-19 cases, or (2) have had COVID-19 exposure. Applying Executive Order N-84-20 and the new CDPH COVID-19 Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated Individuals employers must also exclude fully vaccinated employees if they (1) are COVID-19 cases, or (2) have had a COVID-19 exposure and exhibit COVID-19 symptoms. However, employers do not need to exclude fully vaccinated employees who had a COVID-19 exposure who are asymptomatic.

2. Added new Outbreaks and the “Exposed Workplace”  section – Q&A #15.

Q:  What are the quarantine requirements for a fully vaccinated employee exposed to a COVID-19 case?

A:  Applying Executive Order N-84-20 and the new CDPH COVID-19 Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People an exposed employee who does not develop symptoms of COVID-19, does not need to quarantine.

3. Updated language in Testing section – Q&A #9 answer section – 3rd bullet point.

Q:  In a non-outbreak setting, what are employers required to do when they learn that one or more of their employees had a COVID-19 exposure at the workplace?

A:  Employers must:

  • Notify all employees and employees' authorized representatives who may have had COVID-19 exposure within one business day in a manner that does not reveal the COVID-19 case's personal identifying information
  • Offer testing at no cost to any employee potentially exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace, and provide applicable benefit information. The time an employee spends being tested is considered compensable hours worked.
  • Exclude from the workplace employees who test positive for COVID-19, and exclude employees with COVID-19 exposure unless they are fully vaccinated and do not show any symptoms of COVID-19, and follow the requirements for preserving their pay and benefits.
  • Follow the return to work criteria for returning excluded employees to work
  • Investigate the exposure and address hazards
  • Follow all recordkeeping and reporting requirements for employee COVID-19 cases.

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