• CR

    FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

    BENEFITS & COVID-19

     

    As Caesar Rodney returns to work and prepares for the opening of the 2020-21 School year, the District is working with all buildings to ensure we are safe and ready for the challenge of opening our schools in the midst of Covid-19. Below please find a series of frequently asked questions and information provided by DoE and DPH for staff to help as we transition.

     

    What can I do to protect myself and others prior returning to the workplace?

    Each staff member will participate in a daily health screening upon entering the school building each day.   All staff must answer the COVID-19 screening questionnaire.  Staff who exhibit common COVID-19 symptoms will be required to immediately leave the school building, contact their medical provider, and contact their immediate supervisor.   Anyone who enters the building for the purpose of work or meeting for more than 15 minutes must have a health screening including visitors, parents, or outside vendors.

     

    How can I reduce my risk of Covid-19 in returning to the workplace?

    • Wear a face covering in public at all times
    • Maintain social distancing (at least 6 feet from others), if possible

    (If unable to maintain 6 feet separation, make sure you are wearing a mask and practicing good hand washing hygiene)

    • Practice good hand hygiene
    • Cough or sneeze into your elbow
    • Clean frequently used surfaces often
    • Don’t go to work if you are sick
    • Anyone can get tested for COVID-19 – even those with no symptoms
    • Help us stop the virus; answer the call from Delaware’s contract tracers– the phone number they call from is (302)446-4262, or your caller ID will say DE PUBLICHEALTH

     

    What should I do if I think I am sick, but don’t know if I have been exposed to COVID-19?

    If you experience all three symptoms (fever, cough, and shortness of breath), call your health care provider before you go in-person to the clinic or doctor’s office.

    • Your health care professional will work with the Delaware Division of Public Health to

        determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19.

    • Notify your Supervisor and your Human Resource Specialist.
    • Locally, free nasal swab testing is available daily at the Walgreens on South State Street and

       testing sites can be found at https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/testing/

    • Stay home, rest, and avoid others. Most people with mild COVID-19 illness will recover on

        their own by drinking plenty of fluids, resting, and taking pain and fever medications.

    • If you are unsure what you should do, contact the Division of Public Health Call Center at

       1-866-408-1899 to discuss your concerns and next steps.

     

    What should I do if I have been exposed to COVID-19 and believe that I am developing symptoms associated with the virus?

    If you think you are developing symptoms associated with COVID-19 and have reason to believe you have been exposed to the virus, you should contact your health care provider or the DPH at (866) 408-1899. Notify your supervisor and your Human Resource Specialist that you have taken this step. Anyone who has direct contact with someone with COVID-19 should not report to work and stay home for 14 days after exposure based on the time it takes to develop illness.

    Most people who get COVID-19 will be able to recover at home. CDC has directions for people who are recovering at home and their caregivers, including:

    • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
    • Use a separate room and bathroom for sick household members (if possible).
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing

        your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.

    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least

       60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.

    • Provide your sick household member with clean disposable face masks to wear at home, if

       available, to help prevent spreading COVID-19 to others.

    • Clean the sick room and bathroom, as needed, to avoid unnecessary contact with the sick

       person.

     

    Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19. If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately

    • Trouble breathing
    • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
    • New confusion
    • Inability to wake or stay awake
    • Bluish lips or face

    *This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you. When in doubt call 911.

     

    Where do I seek care?

    Employees, pensioners and their covered spouses and dependent children who are covered by a State of Delaware Health Plan (either Highmark Delaware or Aetna) should first contact their primary health care provider to report symptoms and seek medical guidance.

    If you do not have a primary health care provider or cannot reach your provider, you may seek medical guidance through telemedicine services. Telemedicine is a service that allows you to have an online video consultation with a doctor to receive a diagnosis and get recommended treatment or referrals wherever you are, by using your computer, tablet, or smartphone. The doctor can prescribe medications when appropriate.

    Amwell (1-855-8183627) and/or Doctor on Demand (1-800-997-6196) are the telemedicine vendors for Highmark Delaware members, and Teladoc (1-855-835-2362) is the telemedicine vendor for Aetna members. There is little or no cost to members for using these services depending on your health plan.

    Employees not covered under a State of Delaware Health Plan should contact their primary health care provider or the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) at (866) 408-1899.

     

    Will my insurance cover the cost of COVID-19 testing?

    Co-pays for diagnostic testing related to COVID-19 have been temporarily waived for State of Delaware Health Plan members who require testing per their health care provider or DPH. In addition, the State of Delaware is offering free testing at multiple testing sites across the state for those with or without symptoms.

     

    Will I be able to get tested for Covid-19?

    Testing is being offered to all staff as an option through a third party vendor at no cost to the employee.

     

    I am concerned about exposure from a coworker who seems sick. Can I insist that they be sent home?

    If you have a concern about an employee who appears sick, speak to your supervisor. If building administration, in consultation with the Human Resource Office, believes that an employee has symptoms associated with COVID-19, the employee may be sent home or required not to report to work.

     

    Will I be notified if someone I work with is confirmed to have COVID-19?

    Employees known to be directly exposed to an individual diagnosed with COVID-19 will be notified that a case has been confirmed, but the Americans with Disabilities Act protects the identity and medical information of people with communicable diseases. DPH has provided guidance to the District that secondary contacts do not need to be removed from the workspace nor is it recommended that they self-isolate.

     

    What if I need to miss work to care for an immediate family member who is ill because of COVID-19?

    If you need to take leave to care for an immediate family member who is ill because of COVID-19, you are eligible for 66.67% of pay (max $200/day) for 10 workdays. Any days beyond the 10 workdays will be charged against accumulated leave, or if no leave exists, the employee will be deducted.

     

    When can I return to work after COVID-19?

    Employees who have been sick should not return to work until they meet the CDC criteria to discontinue home isolation and have consulted with a healthcare provider. The most recent CDC Guidance dated July 20, 2020 provides:

    • Persons with COVID-19 who never develop symptoms, may return to work 10 days after the date of their first positive test result.
    • Persons with COVID-19 who have symptoms and were directed to care for themselves at home may return to work under the following conditions:
    • At least 10 days have passed since symptom onset and
    • At least 24 hours have passed since resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and
    • Other symptoms have improved.
    • DPH will issue an email to the infected individual when the individual is cleared to return to work. As of July 20, 2020, the CDC no longer requires a negative test result for an individual to return to work.
    • DPH and/or Bayhealth will determine if a negative test result is necessary to return to work.

     

    What is the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and what does it provide in terms of paid leave?

    The FFCRA is a Federal law that requires employers to provide their employees with emergency paid leave or expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. The Act expires December 31, 2020.

    Emergency paid leave:

    • If you are quarantined by DPH, you are entitled to 100% of pay for 10 workdays.
    • If you have been advised by a healthcare provider to self-quarantine, you are entitled to 100% of pay for 10 workdays.
    • If you are experiencing symptoms and seeking medical diagnosis, you are entitled to 100% pay for 10 workdays.
    • If you are caring for someone who either is quarantined or has been advised to self-quarantine, you are entitled to 66.67% of pay (max $200/day) for 10 workdays.
    • Any leave beyond Emergency Paid Leave will be charged against accumulated leave and if no leave exists, the employee will be deducted.
    • Employees are entitled to only one 10-day emergency paid period.

     

    Will an employee have to provide any documentation upon returning from COVID-19 isolation or quarantine?

    A person that tests positive for COVID-19 will be instructed to stay in touch with DPH. DPH will issue an email to the individual when the individual is cleared to return to work. Employees will be required to share this documentation with their Human Resource Specialist before they will be allowed to return to work. Close or direct contacts may be required to provide a letter from a health care provider or public health official indicating that the employee or family member has completed the required monitoring and/or is released to return to work. The Director of Human Resources in consultation with DPH will determine this. If such documentation is required, it should be provided to the employee’s Human Resource Specialist.

     

    Does COVID-19 affect Paid Parental Leave?

    No. There is no change to the Paid Parental Leave policies and procedures.

     

    Is there workers compensation coverage for employees who are exposed to the virus in the workplace?

    If an employee believes that they have been exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace they should immediately contact their Human Resource Specialist who will assist them in filing a workers’ compensation claim with the State’s third-party administrator (PMA Group). PMA will investigate the claim and make a determination as to whether the claim is compensable. 

     

    What if I become sick with COVID-19 and I am unable to return to work within 14 days?

    State of Delaware employees enrolled in the Disability Insurance Program are required to file a Short Term Disability (STD) claim with The Hartford if the employee is ill and expects to be out of work for at least 30 calendar days. This applies to COVID-19. If an employee files an STD claim with the Hartford because they believe that they have been exposed to or diagnosed with COVID-19, the Hartford will investigate the claim and make a determination as to whether the employee meets the definition of disability. Symptom-free quarantine that is either self-imposed or directed does not satisfy the definition of disability in the STD program and therefore benefits would not be awarded.

     

    Is Short Term Disability available if I test positive for COVID-19?

    State of Delaware employees enrolled in the Disability Insurance Program are required to file a Short Term Disability (STD) claim with The Hartford if the employee is ill and expects to be out of work for at least 30 calendar days. This applies to COVID-19. If an employee files an STD claim with the Hartford because they believe that they have been exposed to or diagnosed with COVID-19, the Hartford will investigate the claim and make a determination as to whether the employee meets the definition of disability. Symptom-free quarantine that is either self-imposed or directed does not satisfy the definition of disability in the STD program and therefore benefits would not be awarded.

     

    What do I do if I am concerned about returning to face-to-face instruction because of an underlying health condition?

    If you have a documented disability that requires a reasonable accommodation to enable you to perform essential job functions, please contact Dr. Noel, Director of Human Resources and your situation will be reviewed pursuant to the District’s reasonable accommodation procedures.

     

    What should I do if I have been exposed to COVID-19 but do not have symptoms associated with the virus?

    Anyone who has direct contact with someone with COVID-19 should not report to work and stay home for 14 calendar days after exposure based on the time it takes to develop illness. Notify your supervisor and your Human Resource Specialist. It is strongly suggested that you get a virus test. For purposes of COVID-19, the CDC defines a close contact as any individual who was within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to positive specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.

     

    Are employee assistance services available during COVID-19?

    The EAP+Work/Life Program is available exclusively for State of Delaware Group Health Plan non-Medicare members and their dependents, and provides access to a wide range of EAP+Work/Life support services from HealthAdvocate, including professional counseling services, legal services, an interactive website and much more. The service is available 24/7 and is completely confidential.

    Contact information: hms.HealthAdvocate.com or 800.343.2186 Website Login: Enter “State of Delaware” as your organization.

     

    Additional Resources:

    COVID-19 Symptoms PDF: https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/wp-content/uploads/sites/177/2020/07/Symptoms-COVID-19_07.29.20.pdf

    Staff/Employee Health Screening Assessment: https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/wp-content/uploads/sites/177/2020/07/COVID-19-Staff-Health-Assessment-Self-Screening-Tool_7.29.20.pdf

    Student/Family Health Screening Assessmenthttps://coronavirus.delaware.gov/wp-content/uploads/sites/177/2020/07/COVID-19-Student-or-Family-Health-Assessment-Self-Screening-Tool_7.29.20.pdf

     

    Delaware Department of Health Covid -19

    https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/

    https://dhr.delaware.gov/policies/documents/covid19-policy.pdf?ver=0421

    https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/wp-content/uploads/sites/177/2020/07/Symptoms-COVID-19_07.29.20.pdf