Avoiding, managing and recovering from Covid-19 was once upon a time the main concern. However, it’s now becoming clear that a significant number of people are having to undergo longer term aftercare for what has been named ‘long-Covid’.
How can businesses support and protect all their employees?
We speak to Sasha Tory, Head of Business Development & Partnerships at Qured, a government approved provider for Covid-19 testing to find out her thoughts and advice.
Currently, there are no specific tests to diagnose Long Covid. For this reason it is important that a company and its staff understand what Long Covid is and have in place the appropriate support and policies for the individual and team.
Supporting employees with regular health checks, a business can help manage health concerns related to Long Covid and in some cases prevent more serious conditions from developing.
Regular covid-19 testing is a critical part of supporting employees as they come back into the office. This gives employees peace of mind – before everyone is vaccinated – that they are not at risk of catching Covid-19 or infecting others.
Whilst the vaccine may protect staff from getting severe illness from Covid-19, it does not mean it can be caught again. This also means the infection can be passed on to others. As a result, it is vital to still make sure we protect others who may not have had the vaccine or cannot have it.
Providing regular testing kits for employees is a secure way to manage employee health. Government-approved rapid test kits provide accurate results in just 20 minutes.
Some small businesses may opt for the free testing provided by the government, however as staff numbers increase, monitoring results twice a week per employee can become a time-consuming task in itself.
With Qured, all the admin involved in monitoring test results and updating the business and staff on best practices can be automated. Qured creates an additional level of privacy as results can remain anonymous. For individuals that get a positive result, ongoing healthsupport and advice is offered through Qured.
Risk assessing the workspace/workplace prior to bringing everyone back into the office will be crucial to ensure your team can be safe in the office.
Practical steps such as providing hand sanitiser and face masks are simple but easily fail if not communicated within the business and set up formally. Other measures can include a one-way system, spacing desks and introducing flexible working hours.
To reduce human error or mitigate overzealous employees failing to communicate positive results, businesses that offer testing to staff can rely on the verification process Qured offers which ensures every test is overseen by a professional health Advisor.
Lunch and Learn
Giving employees the facts on Covid and Long Covid enables them to take the appropriate steps to change their behaviour and fit their overall health needs.
As a general rule, it’s important to take it easy and set gradual realistic expectations in terms of returning to your baseline health. For this reason, it’s important to continue to monitor symptoms and have access to a healthcare professional for advice and guidance.
When it comes to work commitments, employers can encourage staff to speak to your HR team member or mentor on arranging a phased return or having amended duties.