Where are the clusters of COVID-19 coming from?
That was the subject of a state report that was recently reported on by The Hartford Courant.
When a team of Connecticut officials traced 84 coronavirus clusters to their origin points, they found that the vast majority of those clusters stemmed from four places: restaurants, workplaces, homes and child care facilities.
As the Courant was quick to note, the state report has its limitations; it does not include outbreaks at health care facilities or colleges, both of which are traced by the institutions themselves. Nor does the report include every outbreak.
Still, the report does provide some important data points to consider for strategy.
For employers, the report demonstrates the risks still present in the workplace. Compliance with the sector rules still must be a priority, despite the fatigue that is no doubt setting in.
Second, travel is still a significant risk factor contributing to the pandemic. For employees who travel voluntarily, employers should remind them of the travel quarantine rules still in place. (This is particularly important for employees who live across the border and work in Connecticut!) And employers should minimize any business-related travel.
Third, encourage employees to turn on the anonymous contact tracing app on their phones. It’s just one more tool in your toolbox.
Fourth, start talking to employees about vaccines. It’s still too early for many to think about mandates, but that time should hopefully come later this winter or early spring. (Hopefully!)
Finally, take a fresh look at the instructions you have set forth for your employees; remind them of the training that is in place and resend out the guidance from time to time.
The pandemic isn’t ending anytime soon. Indeed, January is projected to be among the toughest months we’ve had to endure.
The report demonstrates that workplaces are still at risk for spreading the coronavirus. Only continued vigilence can help keep that risk low.