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Public Service Occupational Health Program COVID-19 Guidance

This guidance applies following the full implementation of the Policy on COVID-19 Vaccination for the Core Public Administration Including the Royal Canadian Mounted Police on November 15, 2021, when there is regular rapid testing of employees who are unable to be fully vaccinated and are required to be on-site.

COVID-19 vaccination, when combined with public health measures and preventive practices, lowers the risk of transmission and of serious illness for the vaccinated.

Health Canada’s Public Service Occupational Health Program (PSOHP) has developed this guidance to provide an occupational health framework to support Departments and Agencies in increasing occupancy and planning for re-entry into their workplaces.

This guidance is not prescriptive; federal departments and agencies will have unique approaches to implementing preventive practices, tailored to their work settings and employee functions, and taking into account local COVID-19 considerations and public health advice.

Deputy Heads are ultimately responsible for the health and safety of their employees. Departments and Agencies should continue to work with their Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) resources and committees.

The guidance in this document is grounded in the latest science and has been informed by the most recent advice from the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), and will continue to be updated as the COVID-19 situation in Canada evolves.

Health Canada’s PSOHP is responsible for providing occupational health guidance to federal departments and agencies in the core public administration (operationalized as Schedule I and IV of the Financial Administration Act). It may also be appropriate for other federal departments and agencies outside of Schedule I and IV (i.e., separate employers) to consider these recommendations for their federally-regulated workplace.