COVID-19, Returning to the Workplace – Rhode Island
Rhode Island – Rules to keep you safe at Work
Complete daily COVID-19 symptom screenings before entering your workplace
- Do you have any of these symptoms that are not caused by another condition?
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.
People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
*This list does not include all possible symptoms. CDC will continue to update this list as we learn more about COVID-19.
- Within the past 14 days, have you had contact with anyone that you know had COVID-19 or COVID-like symptoms? Contact is being 6 feet (2 meters) or closer for more than 15 minutes with a person, or having direct contact with fluids from a person with COVID-19 (for example, being coughed or sneezed on).
- Have you had a positive COVID-19 test for active virus in the past 10 days?
- Within the past 14 days, has a public health or medical professional told you to self-monitor, self-isolate, or self-quarantine because of concerns about COVID-19 infection?
Importance of not coming to work if ill
If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have COVID-19, follow the steps below to care for yourself and to help protect other people in your home and community.
- Stay home except to get medical care
- Stay home. Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your home, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas.
- Take care of yourself. Get rest and stay hydrated. Take over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen, to help you feel better.
- Stay in touch with your doctor. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you have trouble breathing, or have any other emergency warning signs, or if you think it is an emergency.
- Avoid public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.
When to seek emergency medical attention:
- Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19. If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately:
- Trouble breathing
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
- New confusion
- Inability to wake or stay awake
- Bluish lips or face
*This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.
Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19.
Social Distancing Guidelines
- Social distancing means that a distance of at least 6 feet (2 meters) is maintained between people whenever possible.
- Remember, people may be able to spread COVID-19 even if they do not show symptoms. Consider all close interactions (within 6 feet) with employees, clients, and others as a potential source of exposure.
- Handshaking, hugs, fist bumps and similar type of contact are discouraged.
- If there is outdoor seating areas available, please take advantage of these areas.
- Keep in mind you should also practice social distancing for all small-group activities such as lunches, breaks, and meetings.
- Hand hygiene is an important part of the U.S. response to the international emergence of COVID-19. Practicing hand hygiene, which includes the use of alcohol-based hand rub (ABHR) or handwashing, is a simple yet effective way to prevent the spread of pathogens and infections in healthcare settings. CDC recommendations reflect this important role.
- The exact contribution of hand hygiene to the reduction of direct and indirect spread of coronaviruses between people is currently unknown. However, hand washing mechanically removes pathogens, and laboratory data demonstrate that ABHR formulations in the range of alcohol concentrations recommended by CDC, inactivate SARS-CoV-2. [1,2]
- ABHR effectively reduces the number of pathogens that may be present on the hands of healthcare providers after brief interactions with patients or the care environment.
Proper respiratory etiquette from the CDC
Covering coughs and sneezes and keeping hands clean can help prevent the spread of serious respiratory illnesses like influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), whooping cough, and COVID-19. Germs can be easily spread by:
- Coughing, sneezing, or talking
- Touching your face with unwashed hands after touching contaminated surfaces or objects
- Touching surfaces or objects that may be frequently touched by other people
Covering coughs and sneezes and washing hands are especially important for infection control measures in healthcare settings, such as emergency departments, doctor’s offices, and clinics.
To help stop the spread of germs:
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze
- Throw used tissues in the trash
- If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hands
Remember to immediately wash your hands after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
Washing your hands is one of the most effective ways to prevent yourself and your loved ones from getting sick, especially at key times when you are likely to get and spread germs.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol to clean hands
For information about preventing the spread of COVID-19, see CDC’s COVID-19: Prevent Getting Sick web page.
To help prevent the spread of respiratory disease, you can also avoid close contact with people who are sick. If you are ill, you should try to distance yourself from others so you do not spread your germs. Distancing includes staying home from work or school when possible.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Things that are PPE;
- Gloves: various gloves protect against varying hazards, most commonly, medical grade Nitryl or latex gloves are used to protect against pathogenic hazards
- Body Protection; Most often varying forms of protective suits are worn to protect from pathogenic hazards. In the case of facilities with direct contact of known or suspected COVID-19 infectious subjects, Tyvek, full body suits can be worn. However! To be impervious to the maximum of the design, all seems should be sealed
- Eye/face protection; Eye protection should also be worn for those involved in the direct contact of known or suspected COVID-19 infectious subjects. Eye protection should provide side protection at the least. Face shield make excellent protection, especially when used in conjunction with eye protection.