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AIBU about Coronavirus and my colleague?

(140 Posts)
Honsandrebels Sun 26-Jan-20 22:16:41

A colleague is due back in the office today from 10 days in Beijing. AIBU to be nervous that they may be infected with Coronavirus? My DD almost died from pneumonia as a baby and has damage to one lung, so am terrified about her contracting something like this. I think I am being U as realistically she could come into contact with it anywhere. But this is a person I know who has been in China the whole length of the outbreak. Ideally I would want to work from home until the colleague is 14 days clear, to protect my DD. Even writing this I am pretty sure I am being U. But opinions appreciated.

FlashesOfRage Sun 26-Jan-20 22:24:21

I think you are not being unreasonable on the basis that you have a child that you know would be extra vulnerable to this infection. 💐

Freddiefox Sun 26-Jan-20 22:36:52

It’s pointless you working from home though if she has it she’s passed it on, be better for her to work from home for 14days

CherryPlum Sun 26-Jan-20 22:38:59

YANBU at all, I wouldn't like that, even without a vulnerable lung it would have me concerned.

Mirandaqueenbee Sun 26-Jan-20 22:44:56

Think colleague needs to stay off for 2 weeks I would be concerned aswell

Honsandrebels Sun 26-Jan-20 23:08:44

Thanks all, was expecting to be told AIBU. Yes ideally colleague would stay home, we have 3 preg women and a father of a newborn on the team also. Unfortunately colleague is v stubborn and hard to deal with and will react very aggressively to such a suggestion. Management are soft. I might talk to the union about safe workplace requirements.

NotTerfNorCis Sun 26-Jan-20 23:13:39

I think in your case you aren't being unreasonable. Of course you're going to worry about any possible health threat to your child.

Honsandrebels Sun 26-Jan-20 23:17:44

Thanks @Notterf, I do wonder though as I take extra handwashing etc precautions over the winter flu season which she is equally at risk from, but don’t spend the whole season stressing that workmates might be incubating flu or isolating dad at home. So I wonder if this is really any different. It feels different but that could be emotional rather than logical iyswim.

Honsandrebels Sun 26-Jan-20 23:18:33

Dd not dad!

Pieceofpurplesky Sun 26-Jan-20 23:20:31

I would speak to the others - the pregnant mums and the new dad. Then together speak to HR/Union. The reality of your colleague having it is small BUT any risk is a risk.

LonelyGir1 Sun 26-Jan-20 23:33:17

until there is guidance from the Government about quarantines, I don't think there's anything HR or a Union can do.

RoseAndRose Sun 26-Jan-20 23:33:47

I think the chances of persuading your Occupational Health team to quarantine someone when there is no national policy of isolation for returning travellers is low.

And of course, who else might you meet who has returned from China when you are out and about? Or their immediate household contacts?

If you really are worried, then it does make sense to put yourself into isolation, because that is the only way you know you are not coming into contact with the infection. At least these days, with online deliveries, it's reasonably possible to do so effectively.

Do remember btw, that there were (as of 48 hours ago) 68 cases in the whole of Beijing - a city of over 21 million inhabitants.

Honsandrebels Sun 26-Jan-20 23:37:15

Thanks @RoseandRose - yes the above points you make are why I think my concerns are based on emotions rather than logic!

Littlemeadow123 Sun 26-Jan-20 23:51:16

I'd mention it to HR/union and see if you can get the pregnant women/new dad onboard. If she starts feeling ill, she NEEDS to get tested and remain housebound until the results are back.

HuggedTrees Sun 26-Jan-20 23:55:00

I’d absolutely want HR to keep them at home on full pay until they were 14 days clear.

MarchBorn Mon 27-Jan-20 00:01:09

Do people think that anyone who has been in China within the last two weeks should be quarantined essentially? What about universities and companies where people travel frequently on business?

OP I can understand your concerns, I think there needs to be a universal approach to this though because you have to assume everyone is vulnerable (some more than others of course).

Awkward1 Mon 27-Jan-20 00:12:20

During SARs outbreak my company asked colleage returning from China to not come in.
(Colleague did then travel around UK -eye roll).

littlejalapeno Mon 27-Jan-20 00:32:26

Even in Wuhan, a city of 11 million, there are only 2000 ish confirmed cases. Statistically it doesn’t look like we have much to worry about, especially with a cold snap on the way to deter the virus spreading. I completely understand the worry and would feel the same way in your situation.

BlackeyedSusan Mon 27-Jan-20 00:43:19

The virus is infectious before symptoms so staying home unless ill is not very effective. You are probably more infectious when ill.

Whichoneofyoudidthat Mon 27-Jan-20 00:56:19

Wuhan is a long way from Beijing. There have been just a handful of cases in Beijing and over 20M people live there. Yabu

CobbleDePook Mon 27-Jan-20 00:58:08

What? Are we quarantining all people coming from China now?

Whichoneofyoudidthat Mon 27-Jan-20 01:12:16

Some boarding schools are @cobbledepook. Students who have spent time in China/HK who are heading back after Christmas break have been asked to stay home for 2 weeks.

StudentMummy19 Mon 27-Jan-20 01:19:08

I wouldn't be going into work if one of my colleagues could be incubating the Coronavirus.

StudentMummy19 Mon 27-Jan-20 01:20:45

It's spread to the US so there is every chance it could come to the UK.

CobbleDePook Mon 27-Jan-20 01:23:05

But isn't boarding school the UK home of international students, @Whichoneofyoudidthat ? Where would they stay?

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