Nearly 500 professionals registered for our “Surfing the Next Set of COVID-19 Waves” webinar, a good indication that many employers are still in search of best practices for keeping their employees healthy and on the job during this pandemic. If you missed the webinar in real time, here are a few highlights.
Presented in partnership with Business Research & Intelligence (BRI) Network, the webinar featured several employers discussing some of the innovative ways they are responding to the pandemic and preparing for the next wave of the virus which could converge with the seasonal flu.
Dr. Charles Williams, senior director, corporate health services at Eli Lilly and Company shared how Lilly is building out a new onsite clinic on its U.S. corporate headquarters campus specifically to handle communicable diseases such as COVID-19 and the flu. The goal is to reduce comingling of infected employees with non-infected employees who visit the clinic for health surveillance and other occupational health requirements. The new clinic features negative pressure airflow isolation rooms to reduce the spread of infectious germs and many other safety features such as touchless entries. The clinic also does not have a waiting room. When an employee arrives for an appointment, he or she calls the clinic and waits in his or her car until admitted.
Scott Tucker, co-president of Maple Leaf Farms— the largest duck producer in the U.S. spoke about the changes his family-owned company with about 1000 employees has made to keep employees healthy. As a food processor, Maple Leaf Farms was deemed essential and able to continue operations throughout the pandemic. Like most food processing plants, however, the company was not set up to meet the 6-feet social distancing guidelines for safety. Scott shared an extensive list of changes the company made to its operations ranging from temperature checks to the addition of plastic or plexiglass barriers between workers on the processing line as well as in break rooms.
The webinar also featured Letitia Heshmat, director of employee and occupational health at Mobile-Med, a provider of mobile onsite occupational health services. Her organization has rapidly established a scalable model to support a wide range of employer organizations with the management of COVID-19 employee monitoring and testing. While each employer has a slightly different approach, Letitia pointed to several best practices employers are using for self-attestations and protocols for positive tests.
As businesses continue to strategize ways to resume regular, or semi-regular operations, occ health leaders are faced with making important decisions about how to keep employees safe. Hearing what plans other employers have to manage workplace health and safety during the COVID-19 pandemic can spur new ideas and help your organization prepare for that possible next wave. Watch the full webinar replay here.