Jessica inserts sample into machine

Reedsburg's Worksite Wellness Center Licensed Practical Nurse Jessica Abbeduto inserts a sample of blood drawn from a patient into a machine to prepare to send to a lab for further testing to see if it has the COVID-19 antibody.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission updated June 17 its COVID-19 guidance to clarify that unlike COVID-19 testing, an antibody test would be a prohibited medical examination.

Question: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in its Interim Guidelines that antibody-test results “should not be used to make decisions about returning persons to the workplace.” In light of that CDC guidance, may an employer under the Americans with Disabilities Act require antibody testing before permitting employees to re-enter the workplace?

Answer: No. An antibody test constitutes a medical examination under the Americans with Disabilities Act. In light of the CDC’s Interim Guidelines that antibody-test results “should not be used to make decisions about returning persons to the workplace,” an antibody test at this time does not meet the Americans with Disabilities Act’s “job related and consistent with business necessity” standard for medical examinations or inquiries for current employees. Therefore requiring antibody testing before allowing employees to re-enter the workplace is not allowed under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Note that an antibody test is different from a test to determine if someone has an active case of COVID-19 – a viral test. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has already stated that COVID-19 viral tests are Americans with Disabilities Act.

Visit www.eeoc.gov and www.ruderware.com for more information.