As an employer, you can make use of coronavirus self-tests for your employees. Your employees will be able to self-test for coronavirus. For instance, if they cannot work from home. There are strict requirements in place for the use of self-tests for employees.
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Taking a self-testYour employees can take the test themselves, preferably at home. The presence of a BIG-registered physician or other care professional is no longer required. The test result is valid for 48 hours.
Not all self-tests have been approvedYou can buy several self-tests online. Not all available self-tests have been approved by the government. Manufacturers must apply for a special dispensation to be allowed to market their antigen tests as self-tests. Rijksoverheid.nl offers a list of approved self-tests (in Dutch).
Working from home still the normThe urgent advice remains to work from home as much as possible, and in the workplace if necessary. If your employees do come in for work, the urgent advice remains to keep a safe distance of 1.5 metres. This reduces the risk of contamination among your staff.
No obligation to self-test for coronavirusUnder no circumstances may you demand from your employees that they take a self-test. The employee must take the test of their own free will. Also, you may not forbid employees who refuse to take a self-test access to the workplace. You are allowed to send an employee who shows symptoms home, and urge them to contact the GGD to take a test. You have to provide a safe work environment for your employees.
Self-tests not 100% reliableSelf-test results are not 100% reliable. A positive result most likely means your employee has contracted coronavirus. But your employee needs to take a PCR test at the GGD to make sure.
Nor does a negative test result give you a 100% certainty that your employee is not infected. Does your employee have corona-related symptoms, but a negative test result? You may refuse them entry to the workplace.