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2019 Novel Coronavirus

Monday, February 3, 2020
CPM 2020-01
MEMORANDUM FOR: 
HEADS OF EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
From: 
DALE CABANISS, DIRECTOR
Subject: 
2019 Novel Coronavirus

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is coordinating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to educate the Federal community on the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).  2019-nCoV is a new respiratory virus that has been identified as originating in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China.  For the safety of our workforce, OPM would like to ensure that Federal agencies and employees have the most relevant information from the CDC and other agencies that are providing guidance to help prevent the spread of 2019-nCoV. 

Although the risk of contracting 2019-nCoV remains very low, agencies should remind employees to use good health habits such as hand washing and encourage sick employees to seek medical treatment and use sick leave or other appropriate workplace flexibilities.  Where necessary, agencies should consider implementing social distancing, including the use of telework. 

Since this is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation, OPM will continue to work closely with the CDC to provide updated information on 2019-nCoV to Federal agencies and employees as it becomes available.  In addition, OPM has established a working group of key agencies to determine what human resources guidance is needed to assist employees and agencies in dealing with concerns about exposure to 2019-nCoV.  OPM plans to issue any necessary guidance as soon as possible to assist agencies in meeting two equally important goals: (1) the safety of the Federal workforce, and (2) the continuity of operations.  

Additional Information 

Agency headquarters-level human resources offices may contact OPM at pay-leave-policy@opm.gov.  Agency field offices should contact their appropriate headquarters-level agency human resources office. Individual employees must contact their agency human resources office, as OPM is not aware of agency leave and work scheduling policies and therefore cannot advise on them.  

cc:  Chief Human Capital Officers (CHCOs), Deputy CHCOs, Human Resources Directors, and Work-Life Coordinators