Take-aways from the administration's COVID-19 Q & A
The testing requirement only applies to unvaccinated employees and those employees who refuse to sign an attestation about their vaccination status (and are therefore treated as though they are unvaccinated).
Vaccinated employees are not subject to any testing regimen.
Enrollment in the agency’s testing program is mandatory for unvaccinated employees (and those who refuse to attest to their status).
Agencies are to engage with unions “at their earliest opportunity as they develop agency-specific testing plans” and otherwise satisfy bargaining obligations at the earliest opportunity.
Employees may seek testing exemptions for medical and religious reasons.
An employee may seek a reasonable accommodation but, as with all such requests, they are subject to agency review and approval under the normal agency procedures for reasonable accommodation requests.
An agency may discipline employees who refuse to participate in the agency testing procedure and may bar such employee from the workplace. Employees barred from the workplace are placed on administrative leave until the issue of any appropriate discipline is resolved.
Agency will pay for work related COVID-19 testing. Any agency testing program must use a test approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
Testing must occur at least once a week. Each agency will assess the circumstances of each worksite to determine the frequency of testing but generally testing should not occur more than twice per week.
Remote workers or employees on telework that do not report to the work site will not be subject to testing.
Agencies cannot force non-vaccinated employees or employees that decline to provide their vaccination status to telework, but as noted above, refusal to engage in the testing program will likely result in discipline against the employee.
Duty time will be provided for Agency directed COVID-19 Testing, including travel time to testing site.
Travel cost maybe reimbursed for Agency directed COVID-19 related test.
Test results will be stored in accordance with the Privacy Act and the requirements to the government-wide system of records (OPM/GOVT10) for employee medical files. See, 5 C.F.R. Part 293, subpart E.