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  • If a worker has become ill, they must be isolated from others immediately and brought to one of the local assessment centres for testing and medical attention.
  • They should be removed from their housing unit and provided self-isolation accommodations until they are cleared to return to work.
  • Contact the Health Unit at 519-258-2146 to notify them and receive specific advice on control measures that must be taken to prevent the potential spread and how to monitor other possible infected workers.
  • The following persons should also be isolated while awaiting public health unit direction:
    • Those who occupied the same accommodation as the ill worker;
    • Those who were exposed to the ill worker’s body fluids;
    • Those who provided care for the ill worker; and/or
    • Those who were within 2 metres for a prolonged period of time (usually 15 minutes or more but may be less as later determined by public health based on exposure situation)
  • Provide the applicable instructions to those workers who have been identified:
  • Anyone who is providing care to the ill worker should maintain a distance of 2 metres and should be wearing a surgical mask and any other PPE appropriate for the circumstance (i.e. eye protection, gown, or gloves)
  • Environmental cleaning of the space where the ill worker was housed should take place following their relocation to an isolation accommodation. All spaces and items handled by the worker should be cleaned and disinfected.

Case Management of COVID-19 Positive Cases

  • All positive COVID-19 cases, regardless of whether they are symptomatic or asymptomatic, should be isolated immediately upon diagnosis. The WECHU will conduct an assessment of the ill worker and those who have been exposed. Based on the assessment, direction will be provided regarding isolation requirements for symptomatic and asymptotic close contacts.
  • If there is a large number of cases, positive cases can be cohorted (i.e., grouped together) in shared isolation space (see above), but the cohort should be separated at all times from all others who are not confirmed cases of COVID-19.
  • Positive cases should be reassessed immediately and regularly for new or worsening symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Active cases (i.e., those that may still be infectious, known as the period of communicability) should not work, regardless of symptoms, until they are resolved or cleared by the local public health unit or their health care provider.
  • It is important to determine if a case lives in a congregate setting associated with the farm or in a community setting as this may impact case and contact management.

Declaring an Outbreak

  • It is the role of the WECHU to investigate and assess possible COVID-19 outbreaks and to determine when to declare an outbreak. This will involve working with the affected workplace (e.g., farm), and consideration of the workplace and any associated congregate living settings.
  • Once an outbreak is declared by the WECHU, the WECHU will direct testing and public health management to all those impacted. The WECHU will provide guidance with respect to any additional measures that should be implemented to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission in the setting.
  • Additional guidance for outbreak control measures and roles of the employer, the WECHU, MLTSD, and the Ministry of Health is available in the Ministry of Health’s Workplace Outbreak Guidance and Congregate Living Settings Guidance.
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Last modified: 
Thursday, October 7, 2021 - 11:25am