Health Care Personnel (HCP) are at increased risk for COVID-19 from workplace exposures. A report published by the CDC revealed that among 21,406 Minnesota SARS-CoV-2 HCP exposures, 5,374 (25%) were higher-risk (within 6 feet ≥15 minutes, or during an aerosol-generating procedure); exposures involved patient care (66%) and non-patient contacts (34%). Compared with HCP working in acute care settings, those working in congregate living and long-term care more often continued to work while symptomatic and received positive SARS-CoV-2 test results.
HCP should recognize potential exposures unrelated to patient care and use prevention measures, including masks. HCP in congregate living and long-term care settings experience considerable risk and pose a transmission risk to residents. Improved access to personal protective equipment, flexible medical leave, and testing is needed.
Stay the course, stay strong, stay well, stay safe, mask up and stay tuned!