Data protection law does not stand in the way of the provision of healthcare and the management of public health issues

GDPR permit the processing of personal data, including health data, once suitable safeguards are implemented.

Employers also have a legal obligation to protect their employees under the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (…) Article 9(2)(b) GDPR provides a legal basis to process personal data, including health data, where it is deemed necessary and proportionate to do so. Any data that is processed must be treated in a confidential manner.

Can an employer require all staff and visitors to the building to fill out a questionnaire requesting information on their recent travel history concerning countries affected by the virus, and medical info such as; symptoms of fever, high temperature, etc?

Employers have a legal obligation to protect the health of their employees and maintain a safe place of work. In this regard, and in the current circumstances, employers would be justified in asking employees and visitors to inform them if they have visited an affected area and/or are experiencing symptoms.

Can an employer request more specific details of their employee’s illness on medical certificates in light of the situation in relation to COVID-19?

While employers have a legal obligation to protect the health of their employees, employees also have a duty to take reasonable care to protect their health and the health of any other person in the workplace.  In this regard, employers would be justified in requiring employees to inform them if they have a medical diagnosis of COVID-19 in order to allow necessary steps to be taken.

 

Link: https://www.dataprotection.ie/en/news-media/blogs/data-protection-and-covid-19

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