Safe Operation

Testing and Operations with Covid-positive employees

To find out if you should be quarantined you should contact your local health department.

Note that there are specific guidelines for employees who are delivering essential services - and this includes veterinarians who are working on those veterinary services that are exempt from Executive Order 202.6 (That closes non-exempt business premises)

Here are the NY State Department of Health  Protocols for Essential Personnel to Return to Work Following COVID-19 Exposure or Infection

New York City Department of Health has issued it's own guidelines specifically for veterinarians.

Diagnostic Testing Access: (from DoH)
Individuals who fit these prioritization categories and do not currently have access to testing can call the New York State COVID-19Hotline at 1-888-364-3065 or visit the NYSDOH website https://covid19screening.health.ny.gov/ to be screened for eligibility, and if eligible, have an appointment set up at one of the State’s Testing Sites


We talked with NY DoH about this and they asked us to stress that contacts of cases should remain home if essential functions can be maintained without the exposed staff member being at the work place. Exposed contacts should not be at work unless it completely jeopardizes the ability of the practice to function. Clinics should be smart about who they allow to come back and when. The ability to have exposed but healthy contacts remain at home may differ in different parts of the state as the virus spreads across the state. Contact your local health department to discuss the epidemiology in your region.


Best-of-the-best links

There is a huge volume of resources now available for handling Covid19. We have put together a list of some that stand-out to us as being most useful. Please send us other suggestions.


NYS Department of Health Your go-to site for anything related to client and employee health
AVMA process for deciding how to handle each case Flow chart for assessing risk and choosing options depending on the risk
Dr. Scott Weese -has a great blog on social distancing in clinics and - Social Distancing Guidelines Excellent MUST READ paper from a well-known expert, it includes
  • Table of treatments with criteria for assessing if they are essential
  • Recommended social distancing procedures
  • Detailed advice on handling animals from "high risk" households
AVMA guidelines on admitting a patient from a Covid-19 household This is about as good as it gets for handling pets where they have been exposed to the virus
AVMA Guidelines for use of personal protective equipment (PPE) when demand exceeds supply Very comprehensive - excellent FAQ - good links to other references
AVMA FAQ for veterinarians Authoritative answers to some of the most frequently asked questions
AVMA FAQ for pet owners If you client is asking - AVMA has some answers you can trust
AVMA Main Covid-19 page Constantly updated - easily links to all the AVMA resources
CDC Main Covid-19 page More consumer oriented and broad.
Humane Society of American - Shelter Kit Must see resource for anyone involved in animal welfare
NYS Animal Protection Federations - Shelter Protocols Essential updates for NY Animal Welfare

Webinar recording - Covid-19 viral transmission, and options for veterinary hospital planning.

This hour long presentation covers biological aspects of coronaviruses, disease symptoms, viral transmission, and options for veterinary hospital planning.

Alison Stout,DVM is a veterinarian pursuing her PhD in the lab of Dr. Gary Whittaker at Cornell University, where they broadly study coronaviruses. She graduated in 2011 from Cornell University with a BS in Animal Science and Agricultural Sciences Education. After spending two years researching equine herpesvirus, she went to vet school at Cornell and graduated in 2017. Her interests are in zoonotic and infectious diseases. .

Watch the recording.

Download slides