COVID-19 Workforce Information
The Federal COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) Declaration ended on May 11, 2023. DHS will continue all efforts to protect the safety and health of the workforce so you can continue our mission to protect the nation. While the PHE has ended, people and animals are still getting sick from COVID-19, and the virus remains a leading cause of death in people within the United States.
COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) is a disease caused by a virus named SARS-CoV-2. It can be very contagious and spreads quickly. To date, over one million people have died from COVID-19 in the United States from the beginning of the pandemic.
COVID-19 most often causes respiratory symptoms that can feel much like a cold, the flu, or pneumonia. COVID-19 may attack more than your lungs and respiratory system. Other parts of your body may also be affected by the disease. Most people with COVID-19 have mild symptoms, but some people become severely ill.
COVID-19 spreads when an infected person breathes out droplets and very small particles that contain the virus. These droplets and particles can be breathed in by other people or land on their eyes, noses, or mouth. In some circumstances, they may contaminate surfaces they touch. Anyone infected with COVID-19 can spread it, even if they do NOT have symptoms.
COVID-19 vaccines available in the United States are effective at protecting people from getting seriously ill, being hospitalized, and dying. As with other vaccine-preventable diseases, you are best protected best from COVID-19 when you stay up to date with the recommended vaccinations. As of now, there are no recommended COVID- 19 vaccinations for animals.
Find resources to keep you and your family safe from COVID-19. These resources include:
- COVID-19 Data Tracker (CDC)
- Proper Hand Washing Steps
- How to Disinfect your Workspace
- Facts about COVID-19 Vaccines (CDC)
- COVID-19 Vaccines While Pregnant or Breastfeeding (CDC)
- Guide to Masks (CDC)
- Actions You Can Take to Prevent the Spread of Illness (CDC)
- Animals and COVID-19 | CDC
- Travelers' Health (CDC)
- COVID-19 Hospital Admission Level (CDC)
- Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
- Coping with Stress CDC)
- Workplace Protections and Reasonable Accommodations (EEOC)
- Creating a Safer Federal Workforce: A Response to COVID-19 (USA.gov)
- Contact Information for State and Local Public Health Departments (USA.gov)
- COVID-19 Resources for Veterans (VA)
Everyday preventive measures that reduce the spread of germs also help reduce the risk of respiratory infections like COVID-19:
- Avoid close contact with people suffering from respiratory infections.
- Wash your hands frequently, especially after direct contact with ill people or their belongings.
- Avoid direct contact and handling of domesticated (companion), farm, and wild animals.
- If you have symptoms of respiratory infection, stay home and practice cough etiquette. Cover your coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues, or cough and sneeze into your elbow. Practicing hand hygiene, staying up to date with vaccinations, wearing a high-quality mask based on hospital admission levels, improving ventilation, getting tested for COVID-19, and keeping your distance, when possible, from anyone who is sick.
If you have specific questions regarding your personal health conditions and the vaccine, we ask that you speak with your personal healthcare provider for more guidance.