Self-isolation and Staff Returning from Travel

We are aware of the potential of conflicting messages regarding whether health care workers, too, need to self-isolate after travel. The direction from the Provincial Health Officer that all British Columbians who travelled outside Canada and returned on or after March 12, 2020, and must self-isolate at home does not apply to asymptomatic essential workers.

Essential workers are defined as people who provide services that are considered critical to preserving life, health, public safety and basic societal functioning. While we value the contributions of all Providence Health Care staff – especially at this time of uncertainty – under this definition, only those staff who are determined by their leaders as critical to preserving life, health, public safety and basic societal functioning are considered to be essential.

This means that you are not required to self-isolate after travel if it has been determined by your leader that your presence at work is critical to delivering essential services. 

If your leader determines that you are required to come back to work, you must wear a mask in all areas of the facility.

Providence’s preference is that all staff returning from travel should self-isolate at home, but we understand that due to the nature of our work this may not be possible. 

Providence leaders: if you need support in decision-making, please reach out to your director.

This direction still does not apply to staff who have travelled to Hubei Province in China, Italy or Iran; these staff must self-isolate at home.

All staff who have travelled outside of Canada are required to self-monitor daily and use appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) when providing care.

If a staff member who provides direct patient care starts to develop symptoms while providing care, they should immediately put on a mask, finish any essential services and self-isolate. 

Any staff who develop symptoms should contact the regional medical health officer for Vancouver Coastal at 1-604-527-4893.

This page last updated Mar 23, 2020 11:33am PDT