Recent reporting shows that one-fifth of the workforce may be off sick at some point. It is likely that requests for employees to self-isolate will become increasingly common.
Companies are already establishing policies to address virus risks and absences. For example, JD Wetherspoon has published a coronavirus Q&A sheet outlining leave entitlements, and Chevron sent all employees in its London office to work from home when an employee who had visited Italy began to feel unwell. Acas and the government have published guidance for employers and employees on how to deal with Covid-19 in an employment context.
All companies need to consider and prepare for employee absences as a result of coronavirus: