Ingham County Health Department Issues Emergency Order for Service Workers

Ingham County Health Department Issues Emergency Order for Service Workers

LANSING, MI - The Ingham County Health Department has issued an emergency order requiring all essential service workers and businesses to conduct a brief health screening and a social distancing plan to protect everyone's health and well-being. The order took effect on Friday, March 27 at 5 pm.

On Tuesday, March 24, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued an executive order to temporarily suspend activities unrelated to sustaining or protecting life through Monday, April 13th at 11:59 p.m.

However, organizations and operations involving critical infrastructure workers may continue in-person operations.

The order requires all essential services and businesses to abide by the following guidelines:
• Screen everyone. Check employees for fever or other symptoms if they will enter facilities or buildings.
• Maintain 6 feet of distance between people whenever possible.
• Post this order at facility entrances.

Additionally, it requires businesses and operations that are currently open to follow these measures:
1. Develop and implement a daily screening program for all staff upon reporting to work sites.
a. The screening procedures must include the following questions:
i. Symptoms including but not limited to: fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, and/or diarrhea. When a touch less thermometer is available, a temperature check is strongly recommended in lieu of verbal confirmation of lack of fever.
ii. Any close contact in the last 14 days with someone with a diagnosis of COVID-19.
iii. Travel internationally or outside of Michigan in the last 14 days.

b. Any “yes” response to the screening questions above requires the individual to be excluded:
i. For at least 72 hours with no fever (that is three full days of no fever without use of medicine that reduces fevers) AND other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough and shortness of breath have improved) AND at least 7 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.
ii. 14 days if close contact with diagnosed case of COVID-19.
iii. 14 days following travel unless that travel was due to commuting from a home location outside of Michigan. Commuting is defines as traveling a distance between one’s home and work on a regular basis.

“We must be absolutely vigilant and do all we can. We’re at a critical point in our community’s COVID-19 response,” said Ingham County Health Officer Linda Vail. “The best and safest thing for people to do is to stay home, but this order helps reduce the risk for those who must work or interact with workers while seeking essential services.”

State Law allows Health Officer Vail to issue orders under Section 2453 of the Public Health Code. Any violation of this order is considered a misdemeanor that includes 90 days in jail and possibly a fine up to $200 dollars.

Residents can contact the Ingham County Health Department using the COVID-19 response line at 517.887.4517 or visit hd.ingham.org/coronavirus.

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