RCO Covid-19 Pandemic Response
Action and Prevention Plan
Revised December 2020
This Action and Prevention Plan details procedures to prevent and minimize hazards to human health as it relates to the COVID-19 Pandemic. This document is prepared to describe implementation of precautionary and response measures to execute work safely and effectively by Rock County Opportunities (RCO) employees and clients.
This Plan will be a living document, to be updated as often as new information regarding the Pandemic is released. This Plan attempts to capture specific actions, prevention plans, and procedures to address emergencies resulting from COVID-19. The provisions of the Plan will be implemented on-site and emergency action will be taken during any event that may threaten human health at the RCO site or any of the community sites where RCO employees or clients are employed.
This Action and Prevention Plan supplements the existing RCO Safety Policy.
RCO facility and vehicles will remain closed to all non-essential visitors and volunteers. All visitors and volunteers must report to the front office. Items that need to be dropped off for a client can be left at the front office. People arriving to pick up clients must call the main number or ring the doorbell to inform staff they have come to pick someone up. They will not be allowed in the building.
During a Peacetime Emergency as Declared by the Governor of Minnesota
Pursuant to Emergency Executive Order 20-55, “at-risk persons are strongly urged to stay at home or in their place of residence except to engage in necessary activities for health and wellbeing…” At-risk persons are defined in paragraph 2 of the Order as follows: Consistent with guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”), “at- risk persons” include people who are:
- 65 years and older.
- Living in a nursing home or a long-term care facility, as defined by the Commissioner of Health.
- Any age with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, including:
- People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma.
- People who have serious heart conditions.
- People who are immunocompromised (caused by cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, or prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications).
- People with severe obesity (body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher).
- People with diabetes.
- People with chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis.
- People with liver disease
The Minnesota DHS Commissioner is temporarily modifying Minnesota Statutes, section 245D.04, subdivision 2 pertaining to a person’s service-related rights by adding a new clause: A person’s service-related rights include the right to:
(10) make an informed choice about whether to receive day services in the licensed facility/community or to “stay-at-home” and receive no day services or receive services remotely during the peacetime emergency to minimize their exposure to COVID-19. This right exists even if the person does not meet the definition of an “at-risk person” under Emergency Executive Order 20-55, paragraph 2.
Updated Modifications for RCO Clients to “Return to Work”
RCO continues to modify “return to work” protocols based on updated Bulletin 20-56-11 (attached) guidance from Minnesota DHS:
- Any client that can adhere to wearing a mask and social distance may return to work.
- Services can be provided for up to six hours in the RCO facility (the six hours does not include transportation).
- Services can be provided in the community for up to six hours (the six hours does not include transportation).
- Only 50% of licensed capacity are allowed to work in the RCO facility.
- Pursuant to Emergency Executive Orders 20-55 and 20-63, the Minnesota DHS Commissioner is requiring license holders of a day services facility license under Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 245D, to adhere to Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines on COVID-19. This is an ongoing requirement, as the guidance will evolve during the pandemic. DHS will communicate current guidance and any updated guidance to providers via email and on the DHS website.
- If a person receiving services or a staff person tests positive for COVID-19 or has symptoms of COVID-19, the license holder must follow the MDH and CDC guidelines specific to the situation and program capabilities.
This Response Action and Prevention Plan meets the requirement that license holders of day services for adults with disabilities must establish and implement a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan as set forth in Emergency Executive Order 20-63, paragraph 7.e. The plan must provide for the business’s implementation of Minnesota OSHA Standards and MDH and CDC Guidelines in their workplaces. These requirements are set forth in guidance published by DEED and DLI available on DEED’s website (https://mn.gov/deed/newscenter/COVID/safework/business/).
Remote Services for Individuals
MN DHS Bulletin #20-48-01 allows for Temporary Remote services. These services must adhere to the Bulletin guidance.
Symptoms of COVID-19
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19 (this list does not include all possible symptoms):
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
Exclusion from RCO
The following guidance from CDC will be used to determine if an individual needs to remain away from the RCO building, vehicles, and/or community job sites:
1) If an individual tests positive for COVID OR suspects they may have COVID, that individual can be with others after:
- At least 10 days since symptoms first appeared and
- At least 24 hours with no fever without fever-reducing medication and
- Symptoms have improved Depending on your healthcare provider’s advice and availability of testing, you might get tested to see if you still have COVID-19. If you are tested, you can be around others when you have no fever, respiratory symptoms have improved, and you receive two negative test results in a row, at least 24 hours apart.
2) If an individual tests positive for COVID but does not have and never had symptoms, that individual can be with others after:
- 10 days have passed since test
3) If an individual has a weakened immune system due to a medical condition or medication, that individual may need to remain away from others longer than otherwise recommended. These individuals should consult their doctor for guidance.
4) If an individual has been around someone who had a positive test or suspected they had COVID-19:
- It is important to remember that anyone who has close contact with someone with COVID-19 should stay home for 14 days after exposure based on the time it takes to develop illness.
- Current MN Department of Health guidance states that any individual who has tested positive for Covid and has recovered does not need to quarantine after exposure to another individual who tests positive as long as the subsequent exposure is within 90 days of the exposed individual having Covid.
5) If an employee or customer of a community site tests positive, all clients and staff will be immediately removed from the site. Return to the site will be determined on an individual basis.
Reporting Procedures & Confirmed Cases
According to the temporarily modified Minnesota Statutes, section 245D.29, RCO will adhere to the following guidelines:
In the event of any of the following, reporting and response policies will be followed to minimize exposure and transmission of COVID-19. Notification of any of these events shall be conducted immediately.
- A confirmed case of COVID-19 for a client, employee, or person living with a client or employee
- An individual is denied access to an RCO vehicle, facility or community site or removed from the site for fever or symptoms associated with COVID-19
- Notice of an individual being otherwise impacted by COVID-19
The reporting procedure is as follows:
- All of the following RCO leadership shall be immediately notified:
- Executive Director or Executive Director’s Assistant
- Designated Coordinator
In the event of a positively confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19:
- If the affected person is offsite, the affected person will be instructed to stay home and will not be allowed onsite.
- If the affected person had been onsite in the last 48 hours, protocols below for “onsite affected person” will also be implemented.
- Any individual who exhibits COVID-19 symptoms while in the RCO building will be isolated with staff supervision in the identified isolation room in the RCO facility. Arrangements will be made by RCO staff immediately upon noticing symptoms to have the individual transported home or to another predetermined, safe location away from the RCO facility.
- The Executive Director or designee will gain an understanding of potential locations and individuals the affected person had been in contact with over the last 5 days through a phone conversation with the individual or the individual’s residential provider/guardian.
- All individuals who had prolonged close contact (less than 6 feet apart for more than 10 min per day) with a positively tested person within the last 48 hours will be removed from site as well and will self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days prior to being allowed back on site, symptom free.
- After an orderly and safe shutdown of the RCO affected area, the site will be locked down while it is determined which areas may have been impacted and who may have been exposed. The RCO Executive Director and designee will lead this investigation and decision-making process.
- After the investigation has been completed, individuals determined to not have been affected can continue working onsite so long as it does not impact sanitizing efforts, there are adequate staff to meet client/staff ratios, and it is approved by RCO leadership.
- All affected or potentially affected areas will be thoroughly sanitized. Additionally, the affected area/site/vehicle will be locked down and not entered for a period of 7 calendar days.
- All employees and clients (or residential providers) shall provide notice of any individual who develops symptoms or are confirmed for COVID-19 for up to 7 days following their visit to RCO. If individuals are determined to have been potentially contagious while at the RCO site, protocol for confirmed cases will be followed as laid out in this document.
- All community sites at which RCO provides services shall provide notice of any employee or customer who develops symptoms or are confirmed for COVID-19 for up to 7 days following their visit to the community site. If individuals are determined to have been potentially contagious while at the community site, protocol for confirmed cases will be followed as laid out in this document.
- RCO will communicate with legal representatives, county case managers, and residential providers when service recipients have been potentially exposed.
Voluntary Temporary Facility Closure.
RCO leadership will implement a temporary facility closure if circumstances related to COVID-19 prevent the safe delivery of services. These circumstances may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- COVID-19 exposure or infection in multiple cohorts
- Inability to maintain minimum staffing ratios
- Non-participation by service recipients due to COVID-19 exposure or infection
Site Entry & Work Location Screening
Prior to obtaining access to the RCO facility or vehicles, all employees and clients shall:
- Check in at the RCO main facility with the designated safety manager, or
- Check in with the vehicle driver BEFORE entering the RCO vehicle, and
- Sanitize hands, and
- Complete Access Questionnaire, which includes a body temperature check (see Attachment A), and
- Personnel with symptoms matching those with COVID-19 will not be granted access to the RCO facility and/or vehicles.
- Face coverings shall be required for the duration of the activity and transportation as currently mandated by State law. The following mask types will be allowed:
- N95 respirator without exhaust valve
- Cloth or medical masks
- Employer supplied face covering (if applicable and available)
- Employee supplied face covering approved by the Employer in the event other mask types listed are not available due to shortages
Physical plant and space requirements
- A 6-foot minimum distance shall be maintained between all individuals while onsite.
- A maximum of 10 individuals in each individual area within the facility will be maintained. To minimize cross-contamination between areas, individuals will be assigned to a specific area for the day and should remain in that area, with the exceptions of using the restroom and/or their “safe spot”. Individuals will not be allowed to walk throughout the building, including those who work in offices.
- A maximum of 50% of licensing capacity is allowed in the RCO facility.
- RCO will schedule all client services to be delivered in shifts, with a maximum duration of six hours throughout the day for each person receiving services. The staff providing the services must document the start and end time of each shift and indicate with his/her name and signature or electronic signature that he/she is the staff providing the services.
- The schedule of staff and clients will be designed to ensure staggered activity schedules that minimize contact with others outside of assigned cohorts.
- Every effort will be made to maintain a schedule of consistent cohorts of the same staff and persons receiving services. Cohorts will consist of 10 or fewer people, including staff and clients. Cohorts must be maintained throughout the program day, including meal and break times and should also be maintained during the programming week whenever possible.
- The schedule will incorporate arrival and departure protocols for persons receiving services that include social distancing strategies and other mitigation efforts.
- RCO will have areas specified to be occupied by each cohort of not more than 10 individuals including staff and clients. These areas will be protected from other cohorts using separate rooms or other physical barriers.
- Traffic flow and appropriate spacing to support social distancing will be identified using signs and floor dots of different colors to designate specific work areas throughout the RCO building.
- All seating in the RCO building is spaced to maximize the space between persons receiving services with at least six feet between seats. Whenever possible, seating will be turned in the same direction (rather than facing each other) to reduce transmission caused from virus-containing droplets created when people talk, cough, or sneeze.
- During meal and break times, staff who work directly with individuals will eat at different times and in a separate area at least 6 feet away from others.
- RCO will follow current MnDOT guidelines on the number of individuals each vehicle can safely accommodate. Masks will be worn by all individuals while in the vehicle including passengers and driver. Each vehicle will be sanitized between transportation routes following current CDC guidelines.
Work Location Procedures & Precautions
The following are the procedures and precautionary measures that will be implemented in the work location to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19 to all personnel.
- Any individual presenting respiratory symptoms, fever, and/or meet the criteria developed by RCO to be categorized as a risk to human health, as it relates to COVID-19, will be denied access to the RCO site and vehicles. Affected individuals will be mandated to proceed with recommended precautions and subject to a 14-day quarantine. This includes testing from the local hospital to determine if it is a positive COVID-19 case.
- Everyone entering the RCO site, an RCO vehicle, or an RCO community site shall complete the Location Access Questionnaire (attached) form prior to gaining access to the RCO site, vehicle, or community site each day.
- Individuals will be required to take breaks, lunch, and meetings in their assigned area of the RCO site or community site.
- Everyone will be required to participate in sanitizing tables, doorknobs, handles, and other common touch points used following each visit.
- Staff who are required to assist individuals served with eating lunch or break will be required to eat at a different time to ensure social distancing is maintained.
Cleaning, Disinfecting, and Ventilation
All areas of the facility and RCO vehicles will be thoroughly cleaned at least daily or as often as required in other areas of this policy. All individuals will be required to participate in cleaning and sanitizing common areas.
- Common areas will be cleaned and sanitized daily
- Workers responsible for trash removal will maintain proper PPE/hand washing practices
- Handwash stations will be maintained with soap, hand sanitizer, and paper towels
- All individuals on site will be expected to participate in extra cleanings for frequently touched surfaces (light switches, tables, chairs, door handles, etc.)
Current cleaning, disinfecting, and ventilation guidelines as set forth by the CDC will be followed.
All RCO staff and employees will be trained on the COVID-19 Pandemic Response Action and Prevention Plan during orientation and as needed thereafter.
Best Practices Being Continuously Implemented at RCO’s Site
- Encourage sick employees and clients to stay home: Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should notify their supervisor and stay home.
- Social Distancing: Avoid congregating, large gatherings, and always maintain a minimum distance of approximately 6 feet from others.
- Meetings: Large meetings will continue to be held through Zoom or another virtual meeting provider.
- Mobile Devices/Shared Computers: Mobile devices and computers should only be shared when necessary. Any equipment that is shared must be sanitized before and after each use.
- All individuals must maintain a distance of 6 feet from other individuals while eating lunch or taking breaks.
- No communal food shall be permitted on the site until further notice (donuts, pizza, potluck, etc.)
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE):
- Do not share PPE.
- Sanitize reusable PPE per manufacturer’s recommendation before and after each use.
- Ensure used PPE is disposed of properly.
Attachment A – RCO’s Safety Form Location Access Questionnaire
EMPLOYEE/ CLIENT SCREENING
For the safety and security of our employees, EVERYONE must answer the questions below before entering an RCO vehicle, building, or community site.
- Have you been within 6 feet for 10 minutes or more of someone diagnosed with or has symptoms of COVID-19 in the last 14 days?
- Do you live with someone who has been diagnosed with or has symptoms of COVID-19 and is under quarantine?
- In the last 3 days, have you experienced any cold or flu-like symptoms, including: Fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea? (Not associated with allergies and not treated by a doctor where a return-to-work release was issued.)
Questions must be answered daily before you enter.