Ask the ExpertCategory: QuestionsCOVID Testing
hri_Admin Staff asked 2 years ago

Is it mandatory for any employee who goes for a COVID test to tell their employer?

1 Answers
Glenn Demby Staff answered 2 years ago

I apologize for the delay. I actually did answer your question last week. But when the site shut down, it apparently erased my response. And I didn’t realize that until just now. So, here’s my response again.
No. Employees don’t have to tell employers anything about their private medical care if it doesn’t pertain to the workplace, which would be the case if they test negative. Things get a bit more tricky if they test positive. Employees ARE supposed to tell their employers if they have COVID. You also need to screen them to ask about symptoms, recent exposure, etc. If they withhold that information, it’s grounds for discipline. Not only that but you also have to do contact tracing and tell recent exposures, i.e., people with whom the employee who tested positive had contact closer than 6 feet/2 meters at the workplace in the past 48 hours, that THEY may have been exposed to COVID and should self-isolate and get tested. If possible, disclose that info without revealing the employee’s name or other identifying info. “A person with whom you recently had close contact tested positive for COVID,” NOT “John Doe recently tested positive for COVID.”
But, again, the simple fact of being tested isn’t something an employee must disclose. If you ever find yourself waiting on my response again, please feel free to contact me directly at glennd@bongarde.com. Nobody should ever have to wait 2 weeks for a response. Nobody.