The question of who will compensate persons for any loss of earnings after they have been asked to isolate at home upon coming into contact with COVID-19 infected persons remains unanswered.
For those asked to quarantine as a result of testing positive for COVID-19, the Social Security Board offers compensation in the form of sickness benefits for time spent away from work.
But this is not the case for those who are asked to isolate at home and have not had a positive test result after coming into contact with infected persons.
When the issue was raised during a recent stakeholders forum, Acting Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Ronald Georges said this was a question for the Social Security Board rather than one for public health officials.
“From a public health perspective, because of the high incidence of positivity among households, we are not happy to say that anybody else who is in a household with a positive case can continue to be in public,” Dr Georges said.
He said there is a probability of COVID-19 infection for a full 14 days after exposure to infected persons.
“When that person (in isolation) has been exposed we don’t know they are positive and they may become positive, so there’s a probability of them becoming positive. And in different situations that probability is different,” the CMO explained.
He further explained that the probability of unvaccinated persons testing positive after coming into contact with infected persons is greater for them than for vaccinated persons.
He said the probability of becoming positive is also there for persons, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, who have at least a 15-minute interaction with infected persons while unmasked.
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