April 15th, 2020

NDP: The Ford government must immediately fix dangerous return-to-work guidelines for health care workers with COVID-19

QUEEN’S PARK — NDP Official Opposition Leader Andrea Horwath said the government needs to fix its own guidelines, which instruct health care workers with COVID-19 to return to work in hospitals, long-term care facilities and other health care settings.

A government guideline issued by the Ministry of Health says that workers who tested positive for COVID-19, but are not symptomatic, “may return to work if remain asymptomatic 72 hours from test and continue with appropriate PPE at work…”

“The government’s decision to allow health care workers who have the COVID-19 virus to return to work with the most vulnerable Ontarians is deeply worrying and flies in the face of what we all know about the virus — that it spreads whether you have symptoms or not,” said Horwath.

“As hospitals and long-term care facilities across the province are facing serious outbreaks of COVID-19, we should be assuring patients, residents and their loved ones that we’re doing everything we can to keep COVID-19 away from them, not inviting it to their bedside. And we should be assuring our health care heroes that we’re doing everything possible to ensure they won’t contract the virus from someone they work alongside and share a staff lounge with.”