Employers are required to investigate and respond to any COVID-19 cases in the workplace. The following DPH guidelines are intended to support employers responding to COVID-19 cases identified in non-healthcare settings. For a summary of best practices to enhance safety in workplaces see LAC DPH Best Practices to Prevent COVID-19: Guidance for Businesses and Employers.
Employers are subject to the Cal/OSHA COVID-19 Prevention Non-Emergency Regulations or, in some workplaces, the Cal/OSHA Aerosol Transmissible Diseases (ATD) Standard. For additional information, review the COVID-19 Prevention Non-Emergency Regulations FAQs.
Summary of Recent Changes
Significant changes include the following:
The County Health Officer Order requires employers to report any cluster of worksite COVID-19 cases within 24 hours. A cluster is when three (3) or more linked cases of COVID-19 among an exposed group of workers (employees, assigned or contracted workers, or volunteers) are known or reported at the worksite within a 7-day period. For large workplaces with more than 100 on-site workers, employers must also report when 5% of the workers are COVID-19 cases within a 7-day period, even if they are unlinked.
Report to LAC DPH online.
Once LAC DPH receives a cluster report, we will initiate a response to determine the risk of worksite transmission based on number of cases, their work location and duties, how/if the cases interacted with each other and if they share a household or carpool with each other.
If the cluster meets worksite outbreak criteria, a public health case manager will be assigned to help guide the worksite response which includes providing infection control recommendations, workplace exclusion guidance, technical support, and site-specific COVID-19 prevention and control measures.
For assistance with reporting, please review our reporting resources:
For additional assistance with reporting, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-888-397-3993.
Employers should have procedures in place for seeking information from employees related to COVID-19 cases and close contacts in the workplace. This includes collecting and keeping records of all COVID-19 cases: the employee's name, contact information, their date of symptom onset, COVID-19 testing dates and results, last date present at workplace and their workplace locations and duties. This information must be provided to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and Cal/OSHA, immediately upon request.
Once a COVID-19 case is identified at the workplace, the employer must:
The following exclusion and return to work requirements are for employees in non-healthcare settings. For printable versions of these tables, click here.
For healthcare workers please refer to COVID-19 Infection Prevention Guidance for Healthcare Personnel.
Table 1: Exclusion and Return to Work Requirements for Employeesi with COVID-19
Persons with COVID-19
If the case is symptomatic
Employee must be excluded from the workplace until:
Employee mustii wear a well-fitting mask around others through Day 10iii whether symptomatic or asymptomatic.
If the case is asymptomatic
Exclusion is NOT required unless employee develops symptoms.
Employee must follow the full instructions for people with COVID-19 detailed in the
LAC DPH Guidelines for COVID-19 Cases and Close Contacts.
Table 2. Employees1 that are Close Contacts [Non-Outbreak Setting2]
|Persons with Close Contact Exposure to Someone with COVID-19
These actions apply to all asymptomatic employees that are identified as workplace close contacts, regardless of vaccination status.
|Employee should wear a well-fitting
mask around others indoors for a total of 10 days*
after their last close contact.
Employers should provide the masks at no expense to the employee. Note: Upon employee request, Employers must provide NIOSH-approved respirators (e.g., N95 masks) to all employees who are working indoors or in vehicles with more than one person. See Cal/OSHA FAQs for additional details.
Consider sharing with workers the LAC DPH flyer Protect Yourself From COVID-19 in the Workplace: Know Which Masks Provide the Best Protection.
Employee should test within 3-5 days* after their last close contact with the case unless they have recently recovered from COVID-19.
Employee should monitor their health for 10 days.*
If symptoms develop, exclude the employee from the workplace pending COVID-19 test results.
*Day 1 is the first full day after their last exposure.
1 Exposed healthcare personnel—see Asymptomatic Healthcare Personnel with Exposures.
2 These recommendations are for non-outbreak settings only. During outbreaks, additional requirements will be applicable and guided by public health investigation.
Cal/OSHA states that employers must offer testing at no cost to employees during paid time:
Employers must provide testing in a manner that ensures employee confidentiality.
See the LAC DPH COVID-19 website for additional resources related to COVID-19.