More businesses preparing for COVID-19 positive employees

More businesses preparing for COVID-19 positive employees

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - More Mid-South businesses are now facing what to do when an employee comes down with COVID-19.

The Walgreens on Union and McClean had to close its doors after one of its employees tested positive for the virus.

“When notified of a confirmed or presumed positive COVID-19 case, we take actions meeting or exceeding recommendations from the CDC, OSHA, public health officials and other credible sources while following federal, state and local health advisories,” said Walgreens spokesperson Rebekah Pajak.

The store reopened Tuesday after a thorough cleaning and contacting all employees who may be at risk.

More and more businesses across the Mid-South are dealing with employees testing positive for COVID-19, including Buster’s Liquor and Wine store on Highland Street.

Owner Josh Hammond says one of his cashiers tested positive for COVID-19 last week.

“We knew this was going to happen sooner or later, so we started communicating with the staff and I guess what happened is a lot of fear and panic took over and it kind of hindered our response plan,” said Hammond.

Hammond opted to shut down the store for two days so his employees could get tested.

The Centers for Disease Control does offer guidance on what businesses should do in this case.

The CDC says in most cases businesses don’t need to close, but they should close off areas used for prolonged times by the infected employee.

The CDC says they should also wait 24 hours before cleaning, so not to expose employees to respiratory droplets.

Hammond says 35 of his 41 employees chose to get tested and they all came back negative.

He says that’s proof the store’s precautionary measures are working.

The store requires masks in the store, daily cleaning, and social distancing

Hammond advises other business owners to make plans now.

"Get a response plan down and make sure you go over it with all your staff so it's very clear," said Hammond.

The CDC says if other employees have been exposed to the infected employee for a prolonged time then they should stay at home for 14 days.

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