Question of the Day: Onsite Visitor Health Screening

June 12, 2020

By Penny S. Oleson and Teresa M. Thompson

Question

Can another business perform a COVID-19 health screen on my employee before allowing the employee onsite?

Answer

Yes, COVID-19 health screen checks may be performed by a business before allowing your employee onsite. However, just like any other business practice, the screening cannot be discriminatory in nature by either the questions asked or how it is administered. That is, the health screening questions must be focused on checking for COVID-19 symptoms, close contacts with confirmed cases and quarantined cases, and recent out of continent travel.

Businesses are required by the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) to provide a workplace environment that is “free from recognized hazards that are causing or likely to cause death or serious harm to employees,” such as COVID-19. Therefore, businesses have enacted policies to mitigate exposure to workers as well as other site visitors as part of their preparedness plan for conducting their business. The CDC recommends communicating to all potential site visitors any business policy changes made to help control the spread of COVID-19. These policy changes may include the wearing of masks, use of health screening forms and social distancing.

Information about policies businesses may enact for onsite visitors may be found on many state websites which reference CDC guidance and any state or local laws regarding COVID-19. Some examples of these sites include:

Takeaway

Whether the business is client facing or receiving deliveries, it may perform a COVID-19 health screening of all visitors prior to admittance to the business, as long as the screening is nondiscriminatory in nature.

You can find more information on COVID-19 business practices as well as other topics by visiting our Question of the Day page.


View All: COVID-19 Employment Question of the Day

Fredrikson & Byron’s COVID-19 Resource Center