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What to do when an employee tests positive for COVID-19

This page was last updated 5 August 2020. 

In the event of COVID-19 detection of an employee in a dairy manufacturing facility, the response will be a co-ordinated one involving the relevant food safety regulatory authority (SRA) in your state and the state Health Department (links provided below). This will involve immediate isolation of the impacted individual and a trace and track procedure to identify all at-risk people, including work colleagues, who may also be required to enter a period of isolation. The response procedure will be state specific, but where adequate measures exist to reduce the transfer of the virus, businesses would continue operation.

A suggested response plan would include:

  1. Immediately isolate the employee that is confirmed or suspected of being COVID-19 positive at home.
  2. Notify the appropriate SRA, State Department of Health, your WorkSafe authority and the Commonwealth Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment at dairyeggsfish@agriculture.gov.au.
  3. Undertake rapid tracing of close contacts and ask them to self-isolate for 14 days.
  4. Undertake reactive cleaning protocols as directed by the appropriate authority.
  5. Review current workplace procedures for preventing the spread of COVID-19.

Safe Work Australia recommends taking the following measures:

(click on the image to download the PDF)

COVID-19 infographic

Useful links: 


Dairy Food Safety Victoria (DFSV) - COVID 19 and Dairy Food Safety 

Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) - Business and industry, coronavirus disease 

New South Wales

NSW Department of Primary Industries, Food Authority - COVID-19 advice for businesses 

NSW Department of Primary Industries, Food Authority - COVID-19 advice 

South Australia

Dairy Safe SA - Dairy food safety & the Covid-19 Incident


SafeFood Qld - COVID-19 advice


Tasmania Dairy Industry Authority - COVID-19 and dairy food safety

WorkSafe Tasmania - Coronavirus resources

Western Australia

WA Department of Health - COVID-19 coronavirus: State of Emergency Declarations


Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) - Novel coronavirus and food safety 

Department of Agriculture Water and the Environment - Coronavirus information 

Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) - COVID-19 information for industry 

Safe Work Australia - Preparing workplaces for COVID-19


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