It is important for supervisors to maximize the use of workplace flexibilities to reduce the risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2. ICOs need to evaluate the best staffing options available for the identified work function or office. Staffing scenarios for the laboratory may differ significantly from an administrative office setting, which may, in turn, differ from a front-facing customer service operation. ICOs should consider options that allow telework or virtual attendance at meetings to reduce risk. This will also help ease the stress of all staff as more people return to the worksite.
In some scenarios where facial coverings, physical distancing, or density requirements cannot be adhered to, DOHS (301-496-2960) is available to consult and help develop alternative safety measures to mitigate risk. In these situations, ICOs will need to assure strict adherence to identified additional protective measures and administrative controls. Supervisors must minimize these situations to the best of their ability.
Reasonable accommodations may be available in some scenarios. Please contact the NIH Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion at 301-496-6301 to learn more about requesting a reasonable accommodation.