Covid Question: Regarding responsibility of employers in preventing epidemics and handling situation when detecting that the employees are sick or are subject to isolation, according to Clause 4, Article 23 of the Vietnam Law on Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases, employers, when detecting the disease or signs of infectious diseases, shall have to notify the nearest People’s Committee, professional medical agency or medical facility.
More specifically, Clause 1, Article 47 of this Law also provides that: “When there is an epidemic, a person infected with an epidemic or a person who detects a case of an epidemic or is suspected of having an epidemic, the employer must report it to the nearest health agency within 24 hours from the time of detecting the epidemic. Thus, within 24 hours, the employer must immediately notify the nearest medical facility when detecting that the employee is sick or is suspected of having the disease.
In addition, Article 8 of this Law also stipulates the prohibited acts for the employer when detecting that the employee is sick or subject to isolation, which are:
- Concealing, failing to declare, or untimely declaring cases of infectious diseases as prescribed by law.
- Deliberately declaring and giving false information about infectious diseases.
- Failing to implement or untimely implement measures to prevent and control infectious diseases in accordance with this Law.
- Failure to comply with measures to prevent and control infectious diseases at the request of competent agencies or organizations.
In addition, according to Decree 117/2020/ND-CP sanctioning administrative violations in the health sector, employers have the following obligations:
- Implement personal protection measures for participants in the fight against epidemics and people at risk of disease according to the guidance of health authorities.
- Report to the People’s Committee or preventive medicine agency in the locality on the case of epidemic disease according to the provisions of law.
- Implement measures to clean, disinfect and disinfect in epidemic areas.
- Participate in the fight against the epidemic according to the mobilization decision of the Anti-epidemic Steering Committee.
- Implement decisions to force the destruction of animals, plants, and other objects that are vectors of disease.
Not only that, to avoid spreading to the company, the employer should take immediate measures to isolate the sick person and also take measures such as disinfecting and disinfecting the areas where the employee has worked, limiting the risk of infection. Concentrating large numbers of people when working in the company. Even, the employer may have to make a decision to suspend production if the employee is found to have contracted the disease.
Regarding the benefits of employees, Official Dispatch No. 1064/LDTBXH-QHLDTL on guiding the payment of stoppage wages and settlement of benefits for employees during the work suspension related to the covid epidemic has helped Employers have a way to resolve issues with employees in this case. Specifically, the Official Dispatch stipulates the case where the employee has to stop working during the quarantine period at the request of the competent authority. Accordingly, the salary of the employee during the time of cessation of work shall comply with Clause 3, Article 99 of the Labor Code (the salary shall be agreed upon by the two parties but must not be lower than the regional minimum wage prescribed by the Government). Thus, in case an employee is found to be sick or is subject to isolation but has to stop working due to isolation under a decision of a competent state agency, the employer shall pay the employee’s stoppage salary according to the agreement. agreed but not lower than the regional minimum wage prescribed by the Government.