Employee Guidance to Request Accommodations including Telecommuting due to COVID-19
To help slow the spread of COVID-19, proactive measures to safeguard the health and safety of employees in the workplace are being offered based on the direction of South Carolina Department of Administration. Measures include extending telecommuting arrangements and/or other special considerations to eligible workers who may have a higher risk for COVID-19 infection as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Adults of any age with certain underlying medical conditions are at increased risk for severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19. Severe illness from COVID-19 is defined as hospitalization, admission to the ICU, intubation or mechanical ventilation, or death.
Adults of any age with the following conditions are at increased risk of severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19:
- Chronic kidney disease
- COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Down Syndrome
- Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies
- Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant
- Obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30 kg/m2 or higher but < 40 kg/m2)
- Severe Obesity (BMI ≥ 40 kg/m2)
- Sickle cell disease
- Type 2 diabetes mellitus
COVID-19 is a new disease. Currently there are limited data and information about the impact of many underlying medical conditions on the risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Based on what we know at this time, adults of any age with the following conditions might be at an increased risk for severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19:
- Asthma (moderate-to-severe)
- Cerebrovascular disease (affects blood vessels and blood supply to the brain)
- Cystic fibrosis
- Hypertension or high blood pressure
- Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from blood or bone marrow transplant, immune deficiencies, HIV, use of corticosteroids, or use of other immune weakening medicines
- Neurologic conditions, such as dementia
- Liver disease
- Overweight (BMI > 25 kg/m2, but < 30 kg/m2)
- Pulmonary fibrosis (having damaged or scarred lung tissues)
- Thalassemia (a type of blood disorder)
- Type 1 diabetes mellitus
Or if your concerns about returning to work include:
- You are the primary caregiver for someone with higher risk factors as defined by the CDC above.
- A member of your household has a serious health condition.
- You have household members who are front-line health care workers.
- You are facing difficulties due to school closings or a lack of access to childcare.
- You have anxiety or fear of returning to work.
Employees who are at a higher risk for COVID-19 based on the above risk factors or concerns should first discuss their concerns with their supervisor. You do not need to disclose any specific medical information or medical history with your supervisor - only that you or you as a caregiver or a member of your household meets the higher risk criteria defined by the CDC guidelines listed above. If an additional accommodation beyond the accommodation agreed upon with your supervisor is needed, please complete the COVID-19 Special Request for Reasonable Accommodation Form below.
Requests not under the protection of the Americans with Disabilities Act or the Pregnancy Discrimination Act may be forwarded to Human Resources to review.
If you have any trouble completing the form below, please email Priscilla Harrison at firstname.lastname@example.org in the Office of Access & Equity.