Information alert

The guidance on this page relates to Mid-Mersey division staff who transferred from North West Boroughs Healthcare on 1 June 2021. 

A member of staff was marked as medically suspended due to Covid-19 symptoms, however following swabbing; the test result has come back as negative. The member of staff is still not well enough to come into work should ESR be changed from medically suspended to sick leave?  

If the test result is negative for Covid-19 but the member of staff is not well enough to return to work, the period of sickness will commence from the date of the negative test.

If the member of staff is well enough to return to work, the period prior to the swab result will remain as medically suspended and no sickness absence should be recorded.

How do I input on HealthRoster when my staff are unavailable to work due to Covid-19-related reasons?    

For any staff who need to take time away from work due to Covid-19, please use the following unavailabilities in HealthRoster:

Sickness – Covid-19
Group: Sickness
Reason: Covid-19 – Coronavirus

Carers' leave 
Group: Other leave 
Reason: CL Covid-19- Carers Leave – Covid-19 

Group: Other leave 
Reason: SI Covid-19 – Self Isolation – Covid-19

As a manager, how do I record Covid-19-related absence on ESR?

The Electronic Staff Record (ESR) has been adapted to enable recording of Covid-19 related absence. The accurate recording on ESR of Covid-19 related absence is vital to ensure that the ongoing additional impact on local health systems is tracked throughout the pandemic.

Guides have been developed to support managers to accurately record absence related to the Covid-19 on ESR:

It is possible that staff may require more than one period of self-isolation. Self-isolation will not be discouraged, and these arrangements will apply to each period of self-isolation. 

Where staff are able to work from home (ie they are self-isolating but still working) there is no requirement to record anything on ESR, as the member of staff is still working, albeit from a different location.

Should I carry out an environmental risk assessment in my office?

To keep our staff safe and make sure all workplaces across the Trust comply with social distancing and hygiene requirements, all managers must complete regular workplace assessments to make sure workspaces remain Covid-safe. This includes offices, meeting rooms, kitchens, drink bays and toilets.

Managers should work through the Covid-19 workplace assessment guidance for their workplace. Once you have completed the assessment for your area, you must display a compliance poster.

Managers should also now ensure that a maximum occupancy poster is displayed on the door stating how many people can be in the office at one time. This helps to ensure that social distancing guidelines can be adhered to.

I am in a higher risk group and am worried about coming into work in case I catch Covid-19. Do I have to come in or can I work from home?


You should ensure that you have completed a risk assessment using the Safety Assessment And Decision (SAAD) tool to understand whether you may benefit from additional support to keep you safe at work. If you scored as being high risk using the SAAD tool, the enhanced risk assessment tool should be completed.

Guidance on how to carry this out can be found in MBN 391 and the Enhanced risk assessments flowchart.

If you have an underlying health condition or are in a higher risk group, your line manager should then work with you to ensure your working arrangements are safe. 

Even if you don’t have an underlying health condition you should have completed a risk assessment. This will ensure that all staff have their individual circumstances addressed when considering alternative work arrangements.

It may be that your role requires you to attend work as your duties can only be completed in the workplace. If this is the case and you do not have any underlying health conditions which are classified within Government guidelines for those at risk, you may be asked to attend work to ensure patient care isn’t compromised.

If you have any queries, You can email our Occupational Health team at or call them on 01925 664 010.