How to Manage a Potential Workplace Outbreak of Covid-19

04 Nov 2021

Despite your best efforts to prevent a Covid-19 case in your workplace, it’s possible a worker or other person at work may start to show symptoms.

What to do if a worker has Covid-like symptoms:

Worksafe New Zealand has the following advice:

  • Workers or workplace visitors who are unwell with respiratory symptoms need to immediately go home, and call Healthline or their GP. They will probably be advised to get tested at their nearest testing station.

  • There will be a delay between symptoms developing, testing, and getting test results. Ensure you always follow public health requirements for contact tracing records. This means you can provide comprehensive contact information if a worker does test positive.

  • In most cases the person will not have Covid-19 and, unless advised otherwise, you can continue to operate. Follow advice from Healthline or the worker’s GP about when it’s safe for them to return to work.


What to do if a worker tests positive:

The Ministry of Health standard processes are outlined below:

  • You may be notified by your local public health unit (PHU) about the case. Ensure you have already identified the person within your organisation, usually the health & safety manager, who will liaise with the PHU. If you are informed by an employee or workplace visitor directly about a positive case, then contact your local DHB and NZPPI (as we are liaising with DHBs).
  • Isolate spaces that the infected person has spent significant time in and deep clean them (see General cleaning ). The PHU will provide any additional cleaning requirements based on the extent of exposure.

  • Assist with the PHU's contact tracing process and support any staff identified as a contact of a confirmed case who needs to self-isolate or stay at home. Follow PHU advice on communication with your employees and customers.

  • Follow PHU advice on centre or site closure and any additional requirements


Remember that NZPPI is here to help so please contact us if you have any questions about Covid-19 and/or need support.

Matt Dolan (Chief Executive) - 027 622 9255.




Forgot password?
Create an Account