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What happens if a domestic helper tests positive for COVID-19?

These are the general steps to be aware of should a domestic helper test positive for COVID-19:

  • The domestic helper will be hospitalized, in line with the Hong Kong Government protocols for COVID-19 positive patients.
  • The employment agency should be contacted for guidance and support. The employment agency is also required to report to the relevant Consulates, as the agency should be aware of the domestic helper’s welfare.
  • As the domestic helper will be under a working visa, she will have access to public health on an HK-resident rate. If the domestic helper has just arrived at HK airport, the working visa is automatically activated upon arrival.
  • The domestic helper will be considered fully recovered and fit-to-work upon the end of sick leave which is usually stated on her hospital discharge. She will be given the relevant medical documentation and instructions on any follow up medical appointments
  • For a healthy relationship, employers should keep open-communication with their domestic helper on work and health situations.
  • Seek guidance from the Labour Department and/or agency if you are unsure about salary and sickness allowance payment. (See also: Are employers required to pay a domestic helper’s salary while they are unable to return to work?)
  • Employers should not terminate the contract for the reason that the domestic helper has tested positive for COVID-19. The Hong Kong Government has advised this would be a violation of the Employment Ordinance and/or Disability Discrimination Ordinance.

We do our best to keep our articles up-to-date. Please double-check with the relevant organisations directly for the latest. 

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