Tag: COVID-19

  • Vaccine or Not – But Now it Might Cost You – Delta Air Lines, Ironically, Pushes the First Variant | by Jordan Shields, Partner

    September 10, 2021

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    Companies have been cajoling and compensating employees to get the COVID vaccine, but now Delta is fighting the Delta with a new delta – if employees do not get the vaccine, they will now pay $200 per month for their health insurance.  This is to offset the additional costs to the Delta medical plan due to COVID cases.  While Delta does have 75% of their employees vaccinated, their goals, as with other companies looking for full compliance, are for 100%.

  • When You’ve Been Fully Vaccinated

    April 28, 2021

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    COVID-19 vaccines are effective at protecting you from getting sick. Based on what we know about COVID-19 vaccines, people who have been fully vaccinated can start to do some things that they had stopped doing because of the pandemic.

    We’re still learning how vaccines will affect the spread of COVID-19. After you’ve been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, you should keep taking precautions—like wearing a mask, staying 6 feet apart from others, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces—in public places until we know more.

    These recommendations can help you make decisions about daily activities after you are fully vaccinated. They are not intended for healthcare settings.

    What You Can Start to Do

    If you’ve been fully vaccinated:

    • You can gather indoors with fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask or staying 6 feet apart.
    • You can gather indoors with unvaccinated people of any age from one other household (for example, visiting with relatives who all live together) without masks or staying 6 feet apart, unless any of those people or anyone they live with has an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
    • If you travel in the United States, you do not need to get tested before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel.
    • You need to pay close attention to the situation at your international destination before traveling outside the United States.
      • You do NOT need to get tested before leaving the United States unless your destination requires it.
      • You still need to show a negative test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States.
      • You should still get tested 3-5 days after international travel.
      • You do NOT need to self-quarantine after arriving in the United States.
    • If you’ve been around someone who has COVID-19, you do not need to stay away from others or get tested unless you have symptoms.
      • However, if you live in a group setting (like a correctional or detention facility or group home) and are around someone who has COVID-19, you should still stay away from others for 14 days and get tested, even if you don’t have symptoms.

    What You Should Keep Doing

    For now, if you’ve been fully vaccinated:

    • You should still take steps to protect yourself and others in many situations, like wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet apart from others, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces. Take these precautions whenever you are:
    • You should still avoid medium or large-sized gatherings.
    • If you travel, you should still take steps to protect yourself and others. You will still be required to wear a mask on planes, buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation traveling into, within, or out of the United States, and in U.S. transportation hubs such as airports and stations. Fully vaccinated international travelers arriving in the United States are still required to get tested within 3 days of their flight (or show documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months) and should still get tested 3-5 days after their trip.
    • You should still watch out for symptoms of COVID-19, especially if you’ve been around someone who is sick. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should get tested and stay home and away from others.
    • You will still need to follow guidance at your workplace.

    What We Know and What We’re Still Learning

    • We know that COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing COVID-19 disease, especially severe illness and death.
      • We’re still learning how effective the vaccines are against variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. Early data show the vaccines may work against some variants but could be less effective against others.
    • We know that other prevention steps help stop the spread of COVID-19, and that these steps are still important, even as vaccines are being distributed.
      • We’re still learning how well COVID-19 vaccines keep people from spreading the disease.
      • Early data show that the vaccines may help keep people from spreading COVID-19, but we are learning more as more people get vaccinated.
    • We’re still learning how long COVID-19 vaccines can protect people.
    • As we know more, CDC will continue to update our recommendations for both vaccinated and unvaccinated people.

    Until we know more about those questions, everyone—even people who’ve had their vaccines—should continue taking steps to protect themselves and others when recommended.

    Originally posted on CDC.gov

  • A Note on Requiring COVID-19 Vaccines

    February 24, 2021

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    With COVID-19 vaccinations underway and widespread availability in sight, many employers want to know whether they can require their employees to get the vaccine.

    While recent EEOC guidance implies that they expect many employers to require a vaccine, there are already several states where bills are being introduced to prevent employment discrimination against those who refuse a vaccine (MN, NJ, SC), and it’s likely bills like this will be introduced in more states soon. Additionally, we anticipate that there will be state and federal lawsuits from individuals, which may result in rulings that impact the law in individual states or entire circuits (for instance, the Ninth Circuit, which covers AL, AR, CA, HI, ID, MT, NV, OR, WA, or the Eleventh Circuit, which covers AL, FL, GA).

    Given the legal risks here, and since many Americans will not have access to a vaccine until Spring or even Summer, we believe it would be prudent for most employers to wait to see how things play out in courts and legislatures across the country before deciding to require vaccinations.

    Originally posted on ThinkHR

  • COVID-19 Fraud Protection

    February 1, 2021

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    The COVID-19 crisis has not only stolen the health and well-being of people all over the world, but now, it seems, it has opened the door to criminals who want to steal your money and your identity. Historically, when there are times of crisis, the crime rate increases. We see this with natural disasters when stores are looted or when the economy is tanking and theft increases.  Now, we are seeing this scenario play out in real time as thieves use the pandemic and fear to their benefit.

    SCAMS TO WATCH OUT FOR

    According to Forbes, Americans have lost more than $106 million to fraud related to COVID-19. These losses originate from all types of scams ranging from seeking donations for non-existent charities to price gauging for personal protective equipment. Dishonest individuals call victims and impersonate health organizations with a cure for COVID or products that can prevent infection if you just give them a credit card number. False bank accounts have been opened for the sole purpose of depositing unemployment benefit checks for non-existent persons.  With crime so rampant, how can you tell what’s true and what’s false pertaining to this crisis? Here’s some big scams that you can look out for:

    • Phishing/SMishing—Emails or text messages that appear to be from your bank or from an online retailer ask you to click a link or call a number so that you can verify personal information.
    • Work-from-home scams—Posing as a company or even one of your co-workers, criminals email about fake opportunities to work from home and ask you to apply for a job by giving out personal information.
    • Medical fraud—Fake websites are launched with virus testing kits or medical supplies for sale and collect credit card information.
    • COVID contact tracing—In an attempt to steal personal information such as social security numbers, fraudsters claim to be contact tracers and have identified you as a possible close contact of a COVID patient. Now they ask you for your info to verify and log your exposure to the virus.
    • Vaccine scheme—Calling individuals to sign them up to receive the COVID vaccine, the imposter asks for your personal information.

    WAYS TO PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FRAUD

    • The number one way to protect yourself from possible fraud related to the COVID-19 crisis is to never give out your personal information in response to an unsolicited email or phone call. If you haven’t called the company/bank/organization directly, and someone contacts you asking for your birthdate, maiden name, social security number, etc, don’t give it out. You have the right to decline their request so that you can feel secure in releasing your information. Simply tell the solicitor that you want to call them back and then look on your bill/website/known contact information and call that number to affirm that the person who contacted you is indeed who they say they are.
    • If you suspect that your identity has been stolen, contact one of the three big credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion. When you contact one of these agencies, you can request a freeze be put on your credit so that scammers cannot open any new accounts in your name.
    • “Report financial identity theft fraud attempts to the FBI. The toll-free number is easy to remember: 1-800-CALL-FBI. Or you can go online to FBI.gov” reports Terry Savage, Next Avenue podcast co-host. Forbes has a great transcript of a recent episode online with lots of fantastic tips for protecting yourself against fraud and you can access it HERE.

    In the midst of this pandemic crisis, the most important thing to focus on is the health and welfare of yourself and those you care most about. You shouldn’t have to waste time and effort chasing down scammers who have preyed on you when you are the most vulnerable. By following these easy (and always applicable) tips for protecting your identity and your finances, you can keep your focus on what really matters.

     

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