September 26, 2021

Volume XI, Number 269

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September 24, 2021

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New York Updates COVID-19 Guidance Including Daily Health Screening Requirements

On June 8, 2021, New York State updated the NY Forward Guidance for several industries, including office-based and food services employers, with changes that many people feel are overdue.

In addition to incorporating updated mask, physical distancing, and capacity rules that have been in place since New York adopted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance for fully vaccinated individuals on May 19, 2021, the most significant modification to the NY Forward Guidance update is the change in screening questions. The guidance no longer requires employers to ask about symptoms, close contact, or COVID-19 infections that occurred in the last 14 days. Instead, the new daily health screening questions properly reflect the most current CDC and New York State Department of Health isolation and quarantine guidelines for COVID-19.

The following three screening questions are required:

  1. Are you currently experiencing, or recently experienced (in the last 48 hours), any new or worsening COVID-19 symptoms?

  2. Have you had close contact (being within six feet for at least 10 minutes over a 24-hour period) or proximate contact (as determined by health authorities) in the past 10 days with any person confirmed by diagnostic test, or suspected based on symptoms, to have COVID-19?

  3. Have you tested positive through a diagnostic test for COVID-19 in the past 10 days?

Prior to June 8, the time period for all three questions was 14 days, which was premised on outdated COVID-19 public health authority guidance. In addition, if an employee had a preexisting condition that mirrored COVID-19 symptoms, such as migraines, they were required to answer the symptom screening question in the affirmative. The updated guidance permits employees to account for preexisting conditions.

Finally, the updated NY Forward Guidance now expressly provides an exemption from answering the close-contact question in the affirmative for employees who are either fully vaccinated or who have recently (in the last three months) fully recovered from COVID-19.

The updated guidance is a reminder to employers that the NY Forward Guidance is still applicable for businesses seeking to operate in person.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2021National Law Review, Volume XI, Number 160
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About this Author

Francis P. Alvarez, Jackson Lewis, Health Care Management Attorney, Injured Workers Lawyer
Principal

Francis P. (Frank) Alvarez is a Principal in the White Plains, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He is the Leader of the Disability, Leave and Health Management Practice Group, which assists employers in meeting the legal and practical challenges posed by federal and state laws protecting injured and ill employees.

Counseling hundreds of employers each year, Mr. Alvarez spearheads the firm’s effort to provide imaginative and creative solutions to the complex array of workplace disability and health management issues...

914-872-6866
Richard Greenberg, Jackson Lewis, workplace grievances lawyer, arbitrations litigation attorney
Principal

Richard Greenberg is a Principal in the New York City, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He advises both unionized and union-free clients on a full-range of labor and employee relations matters.

With respect to traditional labor matters, Mr. Greenberg represents clients in collective bargaining negotiations, labor disputes, grievances and arbitrations, proceedings before the National Labor Relations Board, and in state and federal court. Mr. Greenberg also advises clients on the legal aspects of remaining union-free....

212-545-4080
Associate

Henry S. Shapiro is an Associate in the Long Island, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. His practice focuses on representing employers in workplace law matters, including preventive advice and counsel.

While attending law school, Mr. Shapiro was the Senior Articles Editor for the Hofstra Law Review and he became a certified mediator in New York State. Mr. Shapiro completed a Concentration in Labor & Employment Law while in law school.

Prior to joining Jackson Lewis, Mr. Shapiro was an Associate at a Long Island...

631-247-4651
Christopher M. Valentino, EEOC litigation, labor attorney, Jackson Lewis Law firm, employment litigator
Office Managing Principal

Christopher M. Valentino is Office Managing Principal of the Long Island, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. and is a member of the firm’s Board of Directors. Mr. Valentino represents companies in matters relating to traditional labor, equal employment opportunity, employment litigation and related matters.

Mr. Valentino has extensive experience in all matters relating to EEO compliance and workplace laws and a frequent speaker at management education programs. Since joining Jackson Lewis in September 2000, he has regularly counseled clients in the...

631-247-4653
Associate

Matthew J. Bass is an Associate in the White Plains, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. His practice focuses on representing employers in a wide range of labor and employment matters, including preventive advice and counseling.

While in law school, Mr. Bass served as the Managing Editor of the Washington and Lee Law Review and Lead Articles Editor of the German Law Journal. In addition, he served as a judicial intern in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. Outside of the classroom, Mr. Bass was the Chair of the...

914-872-8025
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