Guidance in this document is related to persons in the food or bar industry and is consistent with return to work guidance for non-healthcare providers. Owners and management should follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, ADPH guidelines, and ADPH Food Establishment Rules (if applicable). Refer to links at the ADPH website.
The following practices are strongly recommended for restaurants, bars and similar establishments:
For staff that have tested positive for COVID 19, a symptom-based strategy (time from onset of symptoms and recovery) is preferred and recommended by the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) for release from home quarantine. When selecting a test-based strategy instead of a symptom-based strategy, repeat testing by PCR is contingent upon the availability of adequate testing supplies, the ability of labs to process the specimens in a timely manner, and access to local testing. ADPH does not provide repeat testing for patients who have had COVID 19 and have completed their quarantine. A test-based strategy is not fulfilled by asking an employee for a single negative test before returning to work. Rather, if test-based strategy is selected, a person must have two tests at least 24 hours apart to satisfy the test-based strategy. A single negative test should not be used as a screening tool. According to scientific literature, persons may continue to have a positive PCR test result for weeks or months after they recover. A persistent positive PCR test after serving the quarantine period of 10 to 14 days does not appear to mean that a person can still spread virus. They should wear a face covering, practice social distancing and continue to take all of the precautions currently recommended since there is also currently no evidence of long-term immunity.