Businesses and Community Organizations

Page Last reviewed: July 26, 2023 at 2:06 p.m.   

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We are committed to supporting employers in Whatcom County during COVID-19. You can find information below that will help answer questions you might have. If you are unable to find the information you need, please contact our Communicable Disease team at [email protected] or 360-778-6100.

Workplace Safety and COVID-19 Prevention Requirements

These workplace safety and coronavirus prevention recommendations and requirements are still in effect:

COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Businesses

See our guide, COVID Vaccine Employer Resources (PDF), which offers expert advice to help employers support their employees and communicate effectively about COVID-19 vaccination.

We are updating our COVID-19 Vaccine page regularly with information about the COVID-19 vaccine in Whatcom County. 

When should employees test?

Both vaccinated and unvaccinated employees should test if they develop symptoms or have a known exposure.

What to Do If a Worker Has COVID-19 or Is a Close Contact

If a worker has COVID-19 or is a close contact to someone with COVID-19, they should follow current isolation and quarantine guidance that fits their situation. 

If you have an employee who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, or is a close contact of someone with COVID-19, refer to DOH Guidance for Non-Healthcare Businesses and Organizations during Covid-19 to learn more. If you need assistance, you can contact our Communicable Disease team at [email protected] or 360-778-6100.

Does my employee need a negative test to return to work?

No, it is not required for employees to test prior to returning to work. If an employee chooses to test prior to returning to work and receives a positive test result, they should remain in isolation until the end of day 10. 

What if an employee was exposed outside of work?

Employees exposed outside of work should follow the quarantine guidance applicable to them. An employee’s vaccination status and recent COVID-19 status as well as whether the employee is experiencing ongoing exposure will impact their quarantine guidance.

Employer Tool Kit: What to Do When COVID-19 Comes to Work

The guidance and resources below will help your business or organization respond quickly and effectively when a worker has confirmed COVID-19 or has been exposed to COVID-19.

Masks/Face Coverings

Employers may require employees and customers/clients to follow a masking policy. 

Health care facilities, congregate living and correctional facilities in Washington State must have and enforce a masking policy as per the Governor's Office mask guidance. Review the Governor's Office mask guidance. It explains employer, business, and organization responsibilities involving customers or patrons, including signage requirements and face covering exemptions.

Businesses may download our masking signage (zip file) for print and use in their buildings.