Classifying Worker Exposure to SARS-CoV-2
Worker risk of occupational exposure to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, during an outbreak may depend in part on the industry type and need for contact within 6 feet of people known to have, or suspected of having, COVID-19.
Occupational Risk Pyramid for COVID-19 VERY HIGH EXPOSURE RISK Jobs with a high potential for exposure to known or suspected sources of COVID-19 during specific medical, postmortem, or laboratory procedures.
Workers include • Healthcare and morgue workers performing aerosol-generating procedures on or collecting/handling specimens from potentially infectious patients or bodies of people known to have, or suspected of having, COVID-19 at the time of death.
HIGH EXPOSURE RISK Jobs with a high potential for exposure to known or suspected sources of COVID-19. Workers in this category include:
• Healthcare delivery, healthcare support, medical transport, and mortuary workers exposed to known or suspected COVID-19 patients or bodies of people known to have, or suspected of having, COVID-19 at the time of death.
MEDIUM EXPOSURE RISK: Jobs that require frequent/close contact with people who may be infected, but who are not known or suspected patients. Workers in this category include:
• Those who may have contact with the general public (e.g., schools, high-population-density work environments, some high-volume retail settings), including individuals returning from locations with widespread COVID-19 transmission.
LOWER EXPOSURE RISK (CAUTION) Jobs that do not require contact with people known to be, or suspected of being, infected.
• Workers in this category have minimal occupational contact with the public and other coworkers.