NIOSH Agricultural Forestry and Fishing Centers
Guidance for Agricultural Workers and Employers
- Management in the agriculture industry should conduct work site assessments external icon to identify coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) risks and infection prevention strategies to protect workers.
- Work site guidance for COVID-19 prevention and control should be taken into consideration in employer-furnished shared worker housing, transportation vehicles and work settings.
- Prevention practices should follow the hierarchy of controls, which includes using source control and a combination of engineering controls, administrative controls (especially proper sanitation, cleaning, and disinfection), and personal protective equipment.
- Grouping workers together into cohorts may reduce the spread of COVID-19 transmission in the workplace by minimizing the number of different individuals who come into close contact with each other over the course of a week, and may also reduce the number of workers quarantined because of exposure to the virus.
- Owners/operators should maximize opportunities to place farmworkers residing together in the same vehicles for transportation and in the same cohorts to limit exposure.
- Basic information and training about infection prevention should be provided to all farmworkers in languages they can understand.
- Agriculture work sites developing plans for continuing operations where COVID-19 is spreading among workers or in the surrounding community should work directly with appropriate state and local public health officials and occupational safety and health professionals.
To prevent and slow the spread of COVID-19, agricultural employers can use this checklist to create a COVID-19 assessment and control plan for applying specific preparation, prevention, and management measures. The checklist is divided into five sections: assessment, control plan, shared housing, transportation, and children.
COVID-19 Ag Task Force Response
COVID-19 is threatening agricultural communities on many fronts. This is a discussion with rural health and safety professionals, Ag commodity associations, NPOs, government agencies, academia and the agricultural community. The goal of these weekly think tanks is to identify risks that farmers, farm workers and ranchers face as it relates to COVID-19.
Upcoming webinar Agrisafe: June 24th 12:00CDT
Respiratory PPE fit testing helps assure the best protection against dangerous airborne particles. Agricultural workers face a myriad of challenges in obtaining a proper fit test and who can provide this service. Additionally, there are gray areas of misunderstanding about the fit testing mandates in certain agricultural populations. Respirator Fit Testing in Agricultural Communities will address some of these issues in an OSHA sponsored webinar.
Carolyn Sheridan from AgriSafe discusses with a farm family the importance of using masks in agricultural settings and the health consequences of dust exposure in these settings
Video Series on:
• Choosing the Right Mask
• How to Get the Right Fit
• How to Care for Your Mask
• Purchasing a Mask
• Mask Seal Check
Created with images by CDC - "This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses. Note the spikes that adorn the outer surface of the virus, which impart the look of a corona surrounding the virion, when viewed electron microscopically. A novel coronavirus, named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China in 2019. The illness caused by this virus has been named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)." • National Cancer Institute - "Washing Hands" • United Nations COVID-19 Response - "Things to do to avoid the COVID-19 blues. Mental health is an important part of overall wellbeing, especially now as anxiety and loneliness are on the rise due to the pandemic. This poster is digitally illustrated and designed to highlight the things one can do in the comfort of your own home to increase physical and mental wellbeing during the lockdown/isolation period. Its is a lighthearted take on a tough subject. Image created by Chevon Beckley. Submitted for United Nations Global Call Out To Creatives - help stop the spread of COVID-19."