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Employee with Hep C in Home Care Pennsylvania

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  • Employee with Hep C in Home Care Pennsylvania

    Hello,

    I am an HR Director for a home care agency in PA.

    Today, an administrative employee told me that a Caregiver told her she has Hep C, which was the reason for her calling off so much. She stated that she wont be getting treatment until the end of the year. She works with a client who is high risk (gets potential bed sores) and they are very close, like grandmother and granddaughter close. I am sure that the client is not aware of her diagnosis. I have a responsibility for confidentiality with the employee, however the client needs to be protected as well.

    Our policy does not make any mention of Hep C, only Hep B, but states unless symptoms are visable - employee can continue working. I've also checked with the CDC who states that there are no restrictions for hep c unless "exposure-prone invasive procedures are performed." Which in this case, there are none performed. However, the client depends on her completely, for toileting, bathing, etc. I'm just not sure how to handle this....

    Because this issue was brought to me, I have to address....we require physicals that state an employee is free from communicable disease. Her physical stated she was free at the beginning of the year, and her next physical is not due until 2019, would I be "safe" asking her to have her doctor complete a new form with the new information so that is documented? Any other advice on how to handle?

    Thank you much

  • #2
    For either FMLA or ADA purposes... I'd start an interactive process with the employee which would include documentation from the doctor that diagnosed her. Provide a job description and see what limits they say. Your issue is if she states that the information is inaccurate and refuses. Otherwise if she refuses, deal with the absences under your missed work policy.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by hr for me View Post
      For either FMLA or ADA purposes... I'd start an interactive process with the employee which would include documentation from the doctor that diagnosed her. Provide a job description and see what limits they say. Your issue is if she states that the information is inaccurate and refuses. Otherwise if she refuses, deal with the absences under your missed work policy.
      Thank you so much, great advice

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      • #4
        As far as the client is concerned, there isn't anything to do. The employee should already be employing universal precautions which would preclude transmitting Hep C to the client.

        As far as absences, if FMLA applies, go that route. I'm skeptical that a doctor would delay treatment by several months.
        I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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