Menu of Suggested Provisions For State Tuberculosis Prevention and Control Laws
G. Social Distancing Measures – Workplace, Schools, and Other Public Settings
Descriptive Note: Exclusion of persons with infectious TB from the workplace, school, or other public settings – referred to as “social distancing measures” – may be necessary to protect the public from TB transmission. Below are examples of existing state laws on exclusion from the workplace and/or other public settings; the second bullet is a New Hampshire regulatory provision that establishes shared responsibility between “employers and admitting officials” and the health department.
- If the local health officer determines that the public health in general or the health of a particular person is endangered by exposure to a person who is known to have active tuberculosis disease, or to a person for whom there are reasonable grounds to believe has active tuberculosis disease, the local health officer may issue any orders he or she deems necessary to protect the public health or the health of any other person, and may make application to a court for enforcement of the orders…The orders may include, but shall not be limited to, any of the following:
- An order for exclusion from attendance at the workplace for persons with infectious tuberculosis disease. The order may, also, exclude the person from any place when the local health officer determines that the place cannot be maintained in a manner adequate to protect others against the spread of tuberculosis disease. Cal [Health & Safety] Code § 121365 (Deering 2009).
- Employers and admitting officials shall exclude confirmed or suspect cases of TB from the following places until TB has been ruled out or the confirmed or suspect case is deemed to be non-infectious by the department: 1) Public and non-public schools; 2) Child care agencies; and 3) Work places. N.H. Code Admin. R. Ann. He-P 301.05 (2009).
- Pursuant to [enabling statute], the health officer in the patient’s jurisdiction of residence may exclude a patient posing an immediate or imminent risk to the public health from attending his or her place of work or school, or other premises where the health officer determines that such action is necessary to protect the public health.
- The health officer shall consult with the Department’s TB Program or State Epidemiologist or designee before excluding a patient from a workplace, school or other premises through a health officer order.
- In no case shall a health officer exclude a patient from a workplace, school or other premises for more than 60 days without a court order authorizing such exclusion pursuant to the hearing process established at [regulation describing the hearing process]. N.J. Admin. Code § 8:57-5.11 (2009).