IDPH Guidances Relating to the COVID-19 Outbreak

FAQ for Businesses Concerning Use of Face-Coverings During COVID-19

These frequently asked questions are to provide guidance regarding the application of the face covering requirement in Executive Order 2020-32 for businesses and other places of public accommodation subject to Article 5 of the Illinois Human Rights Act, 775 ILCS 5/.

When Face Coverings are Required

What does it mean to wear a face covering?

A face covering is a mask or cloth face covering that covers your nose and mouth. The face covering should allow for breathing without restriction. There is no requirement to wear a hospital grade mask or other specific type or brand of face covering. You may wear a homemade face covering, if it fits closely and covers your nose and mouth. For more specific information on how to make or care for your face covering, visit the Illinois Department of Public Health website at http://www.dph.illinois.gov/covid19/community-guidance/mask-use.

Food Establishment Guidance

Guidance for food establishments completely closed during this time period

  • Move all perishable/TCS (time/temperature control for safety) foods from smaller, non-commercial refrigeration units and prep-coolers to a walk-in cooler or other large capacity cooler that maintains temperature at 41 F or below. Make sure all food is properly stored and covered.
  • Freeze as many fresh or refrigerated foods as possible. Freezing bakery items, like bread, will inhibit molding.  Some produce, cheese, and pre-cooked meats can be frozen as well. 
  • Discard anything normally  thrown out  due to the seven-day date marking rule. For example, open dairy products, deli salads made on site, lunch meat, soft cheeses, and other packaged food that has been open.
  • Discard prepared foods held hot or cold since the closure will have been a minimum of two weeks, including cut fruits and vegetables.
Audience:

Food Service Guidance

Because the virus causing COVID-19 is known to be transmitted by droplets produced by coughing or sneezing, avoiding close human contact is vital, especially with someone who is sick.  Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.  Hands should be washed often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.  If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.

Audience:

Funeral Homes Guidance

Preventative Actions for Funeral Homes Directors

There is currently no known risk associated with being in the same room at a funeral or visitation service with the body of someone who died of COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A funeral or visitation service can be held for a person who has died of COVID-19 with certain limitations. Persons who have COVID-19 or are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 should be restricted from attending the funeral service or visitation to prevent its spread to others. Attempt to provide ways for family members or close friends to join the service remotely through use of available technology or offer to record the funeral service for later viewing.

Grocery Store Guidance

Preventative Actions for Grocery Stores

Grocery stores can play an important role in protecting their employees and customers from COVID-19 infections by following personal and environmental hygiene practices. The following industry best practices can be employed to keep employees and customers safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Audience:

Guidance for Congregate Living Facilities

Interim Recommendations to Reduce Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in Congregate Living Facilities: Universal Masking and Enhanced Environmental Disinfection

Purpose

This guidance provides universal masking and environmental disinfection recommendations for congregate living facilities in dealing with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

Guidance For Employers and Employees on Workers' Rights and Safety

Federal and Illinois law require employers to maintain a safe and healthy workplace. As we enter Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan and more Illinoisans return to work, employers and employees are navigating difficult questions about how to maintain a safe and healthy workplace during the COVID-19 pandemic. COVID-19 also has raised other employment-related questions involving issues like pay and benefits, leave, and eligibility for unemployment insurance.

This guidance is intended to help both employers and employees educate themselves about minimum required workplace safety requirements, best practices to promote a safe and well-functioning workplace during the COVID-19 pandemic, and to answer some frequently asked questions about COVID-19 and the workplace.

Guidance for Food and Meat Processing Facilities

COVID-19 Operational Guidance for Food and Meat Processing Facilities and Workplaces with Assembly Lines

This guidance document provides parameters for food and meat processing facilities and manufacturing facilities (collectively, “facilities”) to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 and to protect their workers.

Pursuant to the Department of Public Health Act, 20 ILCS 2305/2, and the Illinois Control of Communicable Diseases Code, 77 Ill. Adm. Code 690, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and certified local health departments have the authority and responsibility to investigate and control infectious disease outbreaks, including the COVID-19 pandemic.

Audience:

Guidance for Large Businesses

Purpose

The Illinois Department of Public Health provides this guidance and recommendations to large businesses to reduce the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their business operations, workers, customers, and the public.  For employers who have already planned for influenza pandemics, COVID-19 planning will require updating to address the unique characteristics of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, including  how it is spread, prevention strategies, monitoring for symptoms, and instructions for cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces. Lack of continuity planning can hamper an employer’s ability to address challenges of COVID-19 with insufficient resources and workers who might not be adequately trained for jobs they may have to perform under pandemic conditions.

Audience:

Guidance on the Use of Masks by the General Public

SARS-CoV-2 is a novel coronavirus that has emerged and caused coronavirus disease (abbreviated as COVID-19). Public health experts continue to learn about COVID-19, but based on current data and similar coronaviruses, the virus is believed to be spread between close contacts via respiratory droplets or contact with contaminated surfaces. While staying home, social distancing, and strict hand hygiene are still preferred methods for preventing further spread of COVID-19, face masks are one more tool that may be used by the general public and essential workers to protect each other from respiratory droplets produced when we cough, sneeze, or talk.

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