For the moment we will not be making any changes to our sick pay policy and we would advise colleagues who test positive to follow the guidance to remain at home for five days to help protect others.
Following changes to government guidance in England as part of the move to the Living with Covid Plan. I wanted to confirm our approach to pay that will apply to all our sites within the UK.
Although many of us will be pleased to see the next step towards normality, it is important to remember that COVID is still prevalent and so we will continue to prioritise the health and safety of our customers and colleagues. As has been the case throughout the pandemic, your leadership Is key as we navigate this next step and continue to do the right thing for our colleagues. customers and communities.
This new government guidance will only apply in England and when we have more detail in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland we will update those sites as soon as possible, but for the moment these will continue to operate as they have been doing.
The key changes in England from Friday 1st April, are that free COVID-19 testing for the general public ends, although it remains in place to protect specific groups. Government guidance has been updated to advise anyone with a positive COVID-19 test result to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for five days, which is when they are most infectious.
For the moment we will not be making any changes to our sick pay policy and we would advise colleagues who test positive to follow the guidance to remain at home for five days to help protect others. If a colleague continues to test positive after five days, they should stay at home until they test negative. If needed, you can ask a colleague for proof of their test.
Although you no longer need to report positive cases through to the EiC, all colleague absences must still be recorded through the sickness tile on the HRSS portal to make sure colleague pay is correct. Managers should include the appropriate COVID related absence reason as well as the start and end date timeline as per current guidelines. Colleagues who are absent from work due to COVID will continue to be paid in line with our COVID pay policy.
The guidance remains that anyone who has been a close contact of a positive case should take precautions to minimise the risk to others.
We know that some of our colleagues may have concerns about the Living with Covid Plan, for example those who are clinically extremely vulnerable or pregnant. As we have done throughout the pandemic, all colleagues who are concerned can request time with their line managers so we can support them. And please remember, there are simple steps that we can all take to stay safe including washing hands regularly, wearing a face covering in busy or crowded areas, and keeping a safe distance where possible from other colleagues and customers.
We'll continue to update the Coronavirus site on OneAsda with all the latest guidance and processes so make sure you and your teams are checking it regularly.
Thanks as always for your support.