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Monroe County Health Administrator encourages remote work, changes to sick leave


Monroe County Health Administrator Penny Caudill recommends employers consider changing their sick leave policies and encouraging remote work when possible to prevent the spread of COVID-19, according to a Monroe County Health Department press release. 

Gov. Eric Holcomb signed an executive order Friday declaring the coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency. He designated the Indiana State Department of Health as the lead agency to coordinate the emergency response.

The Monroe County Health Department said it is communicating closely with the Monroe County Emergency Management Director, the City of Bloomington, IU and IU Health, local school systems and emergency personnel to monitor the situation, protect public health and safety and prevent the spread of COVID-19, according to the release. 

Caudill recommended employers consider temporary changes to sick leave policy to address employee needs. Contingency plans for staffing should include flexible scheduling as well as temporary exceptions to leave policies so employees can take care of themselves and family members, according to the release. 

She said employers and organizations should cancel or postpone nonessential large gatherings and consider having virtual meetings. Individuals should also prepare their households for the possible closure of schools or workplaces and limits on travel.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that only people who are sick wear face masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19, according to the release. Symptoms of the coronavirus are fever, cough and difficulty breathing. IU Health is offering free virtual visits and COVID-19 screenings through its app.    

Regular updates and emergency alerts are available on the Monroe County website

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