Delta Air Lines says it is testing “nearly 100 percent” of its workforce for COVID-19. The airline says half of its 75,000 active employees have been tested so far, and the program should be completed by the end of the month.
“Widespread, proactive testing is one of the best ways to slow the spread, especially since the virus can be spread by people who don’t have any symptoms,” according to a statement from airline. “Testing all 75,000 Delta people will help give even asymptomatic individuals time to recover at home and reduce exposure to others.”
Employees who test positive for COVID-19 will be required to isolate at home for a minimum of 10 days, says the airline. Those who have been exposed to others with the virus will remain out of the workplace for 14 days from the date of exposure. In either case, the employee will receive full pay protection while in mandatory isolation.
Delta says it is working with Mayo Clinic to develop a re-testing strategy based on tailored risk assessments.
Onsite testing has been launched in the airline’s hub cities including Atlanta, Minneapolis and New York. More recently an at-home self-collection testing option has been extended to all US employees through Quest Diagnostics free of charge, according to the airline.
Delta adds that it is also offering employees the option of being tested for COVID-19 antibodies at all its “major US hubs” and at “more than 2,000” Quest Diagnostic locations nationwide.
The program is one of a series of new safety measures Delta has added in response to the coronavirus pandemic.