As today’s environment continues to suffer a shifting landscape regarding COVID-19, there are actions, policies and programs employers can implement to address the needs of their employees — starting with a safety plan to minimize risk of contracting the disease. An effective COVID-19 safety plan addresses three things: physical environment, employee testing and access to affordable healthcare.
Physical environment includes social distancing, enforcing a mask policy, providing hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes, and allowing staff members to stay home when sick.
To address testing, employers can hire onsite COVID testing companies to provide free tests to employees. Staff members who test positive are then promptly called and notified of their status and should not return to work until medically cleared to do so.
Lastly, access to follow-up care can help employees with COVID-19 recover smoothly and safely. Even if an employee doesn’t have health insurance, employers can implement telemedicine services for an extremely low cost. By eliminating the cost barrier to COVID-19 care, businesses can help prevent an outbreak.
Although telemedicine was once seen as an add-on service, it has since become an integral part of the care process. Trending even before COVID-19, employers are realizing that telemedicine can connect all employees to healthcare resources, even if the employee isn’t on a health insurance plan. Through telemedicine, employees can access local healthcare services and specialists on their own time. This prevents them from taking time off work to see a doctor while still providing them with quality access to care.
And, responding to today’s concerns, businesses can fit COVID-19 testing into their programs for health, wellness and safety. Testing can be done safely at work. By testing onsite where it’s convenient for employees and by isolating cases as early as possible, employers can help prevent transmission.
Akos provides low-cost, onsite testing to Arizona employers with 50 or more employees. Employees can later access their results through the Sonora Quest portal.
Akos also offers employers a telemedicine app that provides employees 24/7 access to medical care from a full-time network of board-certified healthcare professionals for both workplace injury and personal medical needs. The Akos program can be bundled into group medical insurance coverage or offered as a voluntary benefit.
Kishlay Anand, M.D., M.S., F.H.R.S.
Founder and CEO
Read the other “As Business Changes, So Will Our Healthcare” perspectives.