Amidst the current pandemic, there are a lot of things we need to remember on how to stay safe and help flatten the curve. As we slowly progress to the reopening of businesses, it is inevitable to encounter other people such as your coworkers. Therefore, several businesses have adopted safe practices and protocols in case one of their employees test positive to COVID-19
If you find out that you have been exposed to a positive case, do not panic. In the meantime, take extra precautions until you gather more information. Here are some helpful reminders to keep in mind if you have been exposed to the virus.
Find out the type of contact you had with the positive case.
The first thing you need to know is when and where you were during the encounter with the positive case. In the case that you were in close contact with the infected then you would need to take the next necessary steps, including testing for COVID-19. Close contact applies to those within 6 feet or in an enclosed space with the infected for at least 15 minutes.
If you were not in close contact with the positive case, then there is no need to have yourself tested or quarantined. Although, it is important to continue to monitor your health, limit activities, and always wear protective gear. This reminder also applies to those that were exposed but did not exhibit symptoms within the 14-day incubation period.
For more information on the definition of contact with positive cases, check out this document from the Department of Health.
Monitor if you have been experiencing any symptoms for COVID-19.
According to the Center for Disease Control, the following are the different symptoms you could possibly experience for COVID-19:
- Most common symptoms: dry cough, fever, and tiredness.
- Less common symptoms: aches and pains, sore throat, diarrhea, headache, loss of taste or smell, rashes, or discoloration of fingers or toes.
- Serious symptoms: difficulty breathing, chest pain or pressure, loss of speech or movement
These symptoms could develop anywhere between 2 to 14 days from exposure. If you start to experience any of these symptoms, you need to isolate yourself from everyone. Make sure to contact your local government so they can track you as a Person Under Investigation (PUI). You may also get in touch with the closest medical center (if your local government seems incompetent) so they can advise you further instructions for testing and quarantine. Your whole household will have to quarantine themselves as well until you get your test results.
If you are experiencing any serious symptoms, seek immediate medical attention as you may need to be admitted to a health facility.
“What if I haven’t been experiencing any symptoms since I was exposed?”
There are two possibilities for this – either you didn’t contract the virus or you’re asymptomatic. Asymptomatic means you have already been infected by the virus but have not experienced any of these symptoms. This also means that you’re contagious and may potentially infect other people.
There is only one way to be certain whether you contracted the virus or not which is getting yourself tested. Some health experts suggest that if you’re not experiencing symptoms, there is no need to get tested but to just stay in self-quarantine for 14 days. Your chances of actually contracting the virus are higher if you go to a testing site.
Get tested for COVID-19.
If you need to get tested, it is important to know the types of testing available. There are currently two different types of tests for the coronavirus in the Philippines: Rapid Antibody and Real-Time Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR).
A Rapid Antibody test uses a blood sample where you could get the results within an hour. You could opt to use this type of testing if you were exposed to a positive case but not in close contact with them. If results from the rapid test are positive, it is important to follow this up right away with a RT-PCR for a confirmatory test. Most health experts discourage the use of a Rapid Antibody test as it’s highly inaccurate and the rate of false negatives are high.
The RT-PCR test proves to be the more accurate and reliable one with the use of swabs from the nose or throat of the patient, but this is more expensive. If you have been experiencing any symptoms or have been in close contact with an infected person, then it would be best to proceed with this type of testing. Be sure to isolate yourself as well until the return of your results.
If your test results return positive, follow the instructions of the doctors and medical staff.
If you test positive for COVID-19, listen carefully and follow the instructions that are given by the doctors and medical staff. This could differ on a case-to-case basis. Those with mild symptoms may be told to stay at home under self-quarantine as medical centers are already reaching their full capacity.
It is also important to contact trace as you could have infected others as well. Contact tracing will help contain the virus by having those you encountered begin their quarantine and monitor for symptoms. Make sure to notify the places you’ve been and the people you’ve had contact with prior to getting tested.
How do we handle a positive case in Acceler8?
When coworking with Acceler8, we do our best to ensure the safety of all our clients and employees. In case we encounter an individual that tests positive for COVID-19, we will immediately suspend business operations in the affected site and take the following necessary steps:
- Contact Tracing
This will be done by reviewing the CCTV footage in our center and back tracking reports of our clients who were on-site during the day/s that the positive case visited.
- Recommendation for A8 clients and guests
Coworkers that have been tagged for contact tracing will be notified by the respective Community Manager right away. This would include recommended contacts for testing if needed.
- Notice to the whole Acceler8 community
Our team will inform the entire community within 24 hours from notification of a positive case for transparency and the schedule in which the center will reopen.
- Immediate disinfection of facilities
This will be done as soon as possible. Our team will get in touch with our supplier to know the earliest possible schedule for disinfection. We will only reopen our center a day after it has been thoroughly disinfected. Nobody will be allowed to enter the facility until the center has been sanitized.
If you are ready to bounce back and looking for a safe space for your business, Acceler8 could be the space for you! Should you have questions about our safety protocols and services, stay safe at home and virtually “walk in” to speak to anyone from the team by simply hitting this link: bit.ly/Acceler8Helpdesk.