What is the quarantine period for people who have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19?

On December 2, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reiterated its endorsement of 14 days of quarantine for close contacts of a person with COVID-19, but provided options to localities to consider shorter quarantine periods based on local circumstances and resources. You may have heard about this as this topic was widely reported in the news media over the last day, which may cause confusion among employees about how the news impacts the County. In short, the news does not change anything locally.

Loudoun County policies and procedures for quarantine have not changed as a result of the information published by the CDC on Wednesday. Consistent with the CDC’s and Virginia Department of Health’s current guidelines, the County continues to recommend that people who have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19 stay home and away from others for 14 days after the last contact with the person who has COVID-19. Close contact is defined as being within six feet of a COVID-19 positive person for a cumulative period of at least 15 minutes over a 24 hour period. Learn more about when to quarantine on the CDC’s website.

The County’s general requirements for the mandatory reporting of COVID-19 in the workplace and procedures (PDF) for returning to work following illness or known or possible exposure to COVID-19 remain unchanged. These details are posted on the Employee Intranet, under COVID-19 Emergency Standards.

The Virginia Department of Health and the Loudoun County Health Department continue to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 on our region and local community. Any changes to the County’s policies and procedures that impact employees and the workplace will be announced by the Department of Human Resources.

Please feel free to email Employee Relations Manager Geneva Douglas or HR Risk Manager Rebekah Bofinger should you have any questions regarding these policies.

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1. Are face coverings required in the workplace?
2. What should I do if I come in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 or is showing symptoms?
3. What is the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and what benefits am I entitled to under this new law?
4. What are the County’s policies on the use of sick leave or telework for employees who are diagnosed with or displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or who believe they may have been exposed to COVID-19?
5. Can management send an employee home if the employee comes to work sick or displaying obvious cold or flu symptoms? If so, will the employee be required to use paid accrued leave?
6. Can management require an employee to provide a doctor’s note “clearing” the employee to return to work?
7. When can I return to work if I am feeling sick?
8. What should I do if I am concerned that my co-worker may be contagious or is caring for or lives with someone who is contagious?
9. What happens if an employee is sick and does not have any accrued sick leave?
10. Can an employee telework instead of using sick leave?
11. Will an employee with the COVID-19 virus be covered by Family Medical Leave?
12. What if the employee was exposed to the COVID-19 virus at work as a result of his/her job duties? Will the employee’s exposure to illness and/or subsequent illness be covered by Workers’ Compensation?
13. What if an employee needs time off to care for a sick relative with the COVID-19 virus?
14. What accommodations or assistance will be given to employees with child care issues due to a COVID-19 related school closure?
15. I am signed up to go to a conference and I’ve already made travel plans. Since the County has cancelled non-essential travel, what should I do?
16. Does our County medical insurance plan offer any options for virtual care?
17. I am very worried and fearful about COVID-19 and the potential impacts to me and my family. What resources does the County have available to assist employees with dealing with stress?
18. If I or a family member is exhibiting symptoms of the coronavirus and are also covered under the Cigna health plan, how will the COVID-19 testing be covered?
19. What is the quarantine period for people who have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19?
20. I have a question that is not addressed in this FAQ. Who should I direct my inquiry to?