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When a Restaurant Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

Iowa Restaurant Employees COVID-19

July 6, 2020

When an employee in the restaurant industry becomes ill, it can wreak havoc on the establishment, leaving staff scrambling. During the COVID-19 pandemic, this has also been the case, but with the added pressure from restaurant closures across Greater Des Moines (DSM). The Iowa Restaurant Association, knowing the concerns surrounding the pandemic, has put together guidelines for those in the restaurant industry to help businesses navigate their way through this difficult time.

Within the “Guidance for Employers” document, you’ll find information concerning how to offer support, testing and isolation, team member confidentiality, notifying patrons of contact with COVID-19 and more.

Frequently Asked Questions

Questions businesses might have concerning employees who have tested positive for COVID-19 include:

  • Can I require employees to get a COVID-19 test?
  • How long should a COVID-19 positive employee isolate?
  • Who should self-quarantine after an employee tests positive for COVID-19?
  • Should I close your restaurant to disinfect?
  • Should other employees continue working?
  • Should I notify the public? The Iowa Department of Public Health?
  • Does my business need to pay sick time? What about paid family leave?
  • Who qualifies for the COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) and how do I apply?
  • What records should be kept for federal reimbursement?
  • Can I be sued if an employee thinks they were exposed to COVID-19 in my bar or restaurant?

See the entire presentation from the Iowa Restaurant Association here.

Find the following documents at restaurantiowa.com:

The Greater Des Moines Partnership also offers industry and business function playbooks that offer insight into current impact and future trends at dsmpartnership.com/dsmforward.

You can count on The Partnership to continue to share accurate and fact-based updates as well. See more on COVID-19 here.

Christina Moffatt

Christina Moffatt serves as director of small business resources at the Greater Des Moines Partnership. She most recently served as Regional Director for the Iowa Small Business Development Center (SBDC), overseeing Dallas, Polk, Jasper, Warren and Marion Counties. She is also the owner of the award-winning Crème Cupcake + Dessert, which she founded in 2010.