Here comes the testing again...

As of January 17, 2022, all employers are obliged to ensure regular self-testing of employees twice a week with a rapid antigenic test taken at the workplace. The second testing must take place no later than the 3rd day after the first testing.

The testing applies to all employees regardless of whether they are vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19. If an employee is not present at the workplace at the time of testing, he/she must be tested immediately upon arrival.

Employees are required to take the test at the employer's request. The obligation to undergo testing does not apply to employees who have undergone:

  • a PCR test with a negative result within the last 72 hours;
  • a rapid antigenic test with a negative result (performed by a health care professional) within the last 24 hours; or
  • preventive testing with another employer.

If the employee refuses to take the test, the procedure is as follows:

  • the employer is obliged to report this fact to the locally competent regional public health authority;
  • the employee must wear a respirator at all times when at the workplace;
  • the employee must keep a distance of at least 1.5 m from other persons;
  • the employee must eat separately from other persons (this must be ensured by the employer by means of an organisational measure).

Employers are obliged to keep a record of the tests carried out (the date of testing, the names of the persons tested on that date, including their date of birth, their health insurance number and the name of the health insurance company with which they are insured) and the result of the test for control purposes. The records must be kept for 90 days. Employers must also send a list of persons who have tested positive to the regional public health authority.

If the test result is positive, the employee must immediately inform his or her employer and leave the workplace. The regional public health authority will then order a 5-day quarantine upon the employee. On the first day after the end of the quarantine, when the employee is present at the workplace, the employer is obliged to provide the employee with a rapid antigenic test.

The employee may also undergo a PCR test to refute/confirm the positive antigenic test result. If the PCR test turns out to be negative PCR test result, the employee's quarantine will be terminated by the regional public health authority.

In order to get compensated for the costs of providing for the testing, the employer may claim an allowance in the same way as before.