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COVID-19 HR Policies and Procedures

covid hr policies

As COVID-19 vaccine mandates roll out, HR leaders must address questions regarding vaccination policies. Furthermore, any vaccination policy must not violate an employee’s rights under ADA or their religious beliefs.

Covid HR policies remain an area of priority for businesses, and developing and communicating these effectively remains an uphill struggle. Furthermore, pandemic-specific workplace policies must also be put in place.

Vaccination Requirements

COVID-19 vaccination requirements should be set according to current medical advice, and integrated into a workplace’s infection control program. Employers may wish to work with local public health authorities and pharmacies to offer workers this vaccine; as well as offering at-risk employees telecommuting solutions.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People state that fully immunized populations are generally protected against both severe illness and breakthrough infections; when they do arise (breakthrough infections), they tend to be mild. Nonetheless, some fully immunized people living in communities with substantial or high community transmission have been reported transmitting the virus directly, prompting employers to monitor workplaces for outbreaks and take preventative measures like mask wearing and physical distancing as a safeguard irrespective of vaccination status.

Employers may ask employees about their vaccination status, but the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) mandates that such questions must be job related and consistent with business necessity. Refusal to answer such inquiries does not lead to adverse action being taken against employees by their employers, who must keep any medical information they obtain related to someone deciding not to be vaccinated confidential. Employers should review their Vaccination Requirements regularly in order to comply with all relevant laws and regulations (such as EEO laws).

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