Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on individual risk assessment for the workplace

Published: 27 Jul 2020
Last updated: 29 Jul 2020 - see all updates

Risk assessment guidance and tool for staff across all industries which should be used by employers to support staff and line managers to understand and carry out effective risk assessments.

27 Jul 2020
Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on individual risk assessment for the workplace

Occupational risk assessment guidance

We have developed this guidance to help staff and managers consider the specific risk of COVID-19 in the workplace. It is relevant to all staff, but will be particularly relevant to those who are returning to work after shielding, those who are returning to normal duties after COVID-19 related restrictions, those who are returning to the workplace after working from home or anyone who has a concern about a particular vulnerability to COVID-19.

The guidance was developed using the latest clinical evidence that sets out best practice on risk assessment for COVID-19 as an easy to follow tool. We will keep the tool under review as we learn more about COVID-19 in Scotland. Employers should continue to follow public health and sector-specific advice, and where possible, home working should continue.

Employers have a legal responsibility to keep their staff safe and promote their wellbeing. They also have important duties under equalities legislation, and should make reasonable adjustments to support workers with disabilities. We encourage employers to use this tool with their staff to help them to return to work safely.

After a workplace risk assessment has been undertaken and measures to reduce the risk of transmission have been put in place, staff and their managers should use the risk assessment tool to identify the individual’s vulnerability level.

Staff should be active participants in this risk assessment which uses factors including age, ethnicity, BMI in addition to underlying health conditions to stratify risk. Staff and managers should then have a supportive conversation about how they can return to work safely which should be agreed by both parties.

The Scottish Government would like to thank the Association of Local Authority Medical Advisors (ALAMA) Joint Occupational Health COVID-19 Group for developing the COVID-age tool and for giving us permission to use it. In particular Professor David Coggon, Professor Peter Croft, Professor Paul Cullinan and Dr Tony Williams. We are also grateful to the group of Scottish Occupational Physicians.

Easy read versions of the form and guidance are also available.

First published: 27 Jul 2020 Last updated: 29 Jul 2020 -