Worker health and wellness Workplace exposures

NSC part of coalition calling for COVID-19 testing at all essential workplaces

Photo: zetat/istockphoto

Itasca, IL — The National Safety Council, along with more than 50 partner organizations, is calling on the federal government to provide COVID-19 testing resources to all employers and worksites engaged in essential business services during the pandemic.

In an April 14 letter sent to Vice President Mike Pence, the coalition points out that about 25% of people with COVID-19 present as asymptomatic, increasing the risk of exposure among workers. So, as more testing supplies become available to workplaces outside the health care industry, workplace testing should be a priority.

“A lack of easily accessible COVID-19 testing means that some of our employees may unknowingly be coming to work and spreading the disease to their co-workers and the public,” the letter states.

NSC President and CEO Lorraine M. Martin added in an April 15 press release: “We cannot flatten the curve without protecting our nation’s workers, many of whom have continued reporting to traditional worksites in the midst of this global pandemic, unable to work remotely. We must protect these workers, and one of the best ways to do so is by conducting more tests. As soon as tests are widely available, we expect that our nation’s employers will have access to them.”

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