Despite various COVID-19-related emergency declarations ending and many restrictions being lifted, Los Angeles County health officials reminded employers Friday that state workplace-safety requirements remain in place.
Among the rules still being enforced by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health are a requirement that employees who test positive remain out of the worksite for at least five days. Those employees can return between days six and 10 after testing positive if they have been fever-free for 24 hours and other symptoms have subsided, health officials said.
Employers are also required to notify other workers who may have been exposed to the virus, to make testing available to employees who may have been exposed and to ensure that all exposed employees take a test within three to five days.
Employers are required to report clusters of three or more cases that occur within 14 days to the county Department of Public Health.
“Cal-OSHA is clear that worksites need to be safe by protecting workers from transmission of COVID-19,” county Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement. “We encourage everyone to be mindful of worksite rules and do their best to not transmit this virus to others by isolating when infected and using masks and tests appropriately when exposed to the virus. Together our efforts provide support to those who are most vulnerable and minimize the disruptions to school, work, and our daily lives.”
The county reported 10 more COVID-related deaths on Friday, raising the overall death toll to 35,970. A majority of people who die with COVID-19 are elderly or have an underlying health condition such as diabetes, heart disease or hypertension, health officials have said.
Another 932 COVID infections were reported Friday, raising the cumulative total from throughout the pandemic to 3,723,386. Overall case reports from the county are considered to be undercounts of actual virus activity, due to the number of people who use at-home tests and don’t report the results, or those who don’t bother testing at all.
According to state figures, there were 413 COVID-positive patients in county hospitals as of Friday, down from 420 a day earlier. Of those patients, 43 were being treated in intensive care units, up from 39 on Thursday.
Some patients were admitted for other reasons and learned they had COVID after a mandated test.