Omicron Delay of Game: 5 Lessons Employers Can Learn from Sports Leagues to Keep Your Employees from Being Benched by COVID-19 – JD Supra

Due to the recent Omicron surge in COVID-19 infections, many professional sports organizations have taken dramatic steps to address the rising infection rates among their players and staff. Unfortunately, the surges in the infection rates are occurring even though most leagues report strong vaccination rates. This Insight provides five takeaways that you can consider implementing using lessons learned from professional sports leagues dealing with the Omicron surge.

  1. Review and Update Your COVID-19 Protocols

    All professional sports leagues in the U.S. have different safety protocols for players who are vaccinated and those who are not, allowing those vaccinated to wear masks less often, travel more freely, and even dine together indoors. However, with the recent surge in COVID-19 and breakthrough infections, several are revisiting these policies. Like these leagues, employers should conduct a careful review of their COVID-19 protocols and revise the policies as needed considering the more transmissible variants. This may include updated protocols for remote work, indoor meetings, masking requirements (even for vaccinated employees), quarantine requirements for employees that test positive, and limitations on visitors.

    As a part of this process, employers should regularly evaluate their policies to make sure they are in line with most recent information. This policy review should take into account the most recent the most recent CDC guidelines.

    Employers should also be prepared to update policies regarding when an employee is considered fully vaccinated to include the possibility of including a booster shot as part of their definition. As the new Omicron variant becomes more prevalent, the CDC is encouraging booster shots. It is likely that the CDC will require booster shots for a person to be considered fully vaccinated at some point in the future, as some sports leagues have already adopted the change.

  2. Consider the Benefits of a Vaccinated Workforce

    The sports leagues have demonstrated the benefits of vaccinations, with some reporting over 95% of players have been vaccinated. While the rise in infections has come despite the high vaccination rates, the impact of the virus on the vaccinated players has been limited. The lack of any significant illness with these infected players is consistent with the CDC data and medical evidence that shows that the vaccinations do protect against serious illness, hospitalizations and death.

    Across the general population, the vaccination rate is a concern for many employers. Certain states have vaccination rates are below 50%, and approximately 72% of Americans aged 18 or older are fully vaccinated. But even where there are breakthrough cases documented, the COVID-19 infection is less likely to be severe for employees who are fully vaccinated, leading to cost savings for medical costs. Because the recovery time is shorter for those who have been vaccinated, this means less time off from work.

    In line with the sports teams, employers may take steps to increase the percentages of employee vaccinations. A company may want to take steps to encourage employee vaccinations and adopt a robust vaccination program, including offering vaccine incentives and educational opportunities for reluctant employees. There are several employers who have adopted vaccine mandates, and other employers are subject to state and federal vaccine mandates.

  3. Consider Reinstating Mandatory Masking and Social Distancing Requirements for All Employees.

    In light of the Omicron variant and COVID-19 surge, many local and state governments are reinstituting health and safety measures, including masking and social distancing requirements. Indeed, employers subject to the OSHA ETS will be required to require face coverings for employees. …….

    Source: https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/omicron-delay-of-game-5-lessons-7587549/

    Due to the recent Omicron surge in COVID-19 infections, many professional sports organizations have taken dramatic steps to address the rising infection rates among their players and staff. Unfortunately, the surges in the infection rates are occurring even though most leagues report strong vaccination rates. This Insight provides five takeaways that you can consider implementing using lessons learned from professional sports leagues dealing with the Omicron surge.

    Review and Update Your COVID-19 Protocols

    All professional sports leagues in the U.S. have different safety protocols for players who are vaccinated and those who are not, allowing those vaccinated to wear masks l…….

    Due to the recent Omicron surge in COVID-19 infections, many professional sports organizations have taken dramatic steps to address the rising infection rates among their players and staff. Unfortunately, the surges in the infection rates are occurring even though most leagues report strong vaccination rates. This Insight provides five takeaways that you can consider implementing using lessons learned from professional sports leagues dealing with the Omicron surge.

    Review and Update Your COVID-19 Protocols

    All professional sports leagues in the U.S. have different safety protocols for players who are vaccinated and those who are not, allowing those vaccinated to wear masks l…….

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