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COVID-19 leave options

From: Human Resources

Public Health Emergency Leave (PHEL) is available to employees for many COVID-19 related leave incidents including:

  • To attend to an employee’s own illness due to a confirmed positive test for COVID-19. The employee’s return to the workplace must comport with the CDC’s recommendations.
  • To attend to an immediate family member who has contracted COVID-19 through a confirmed positive test.
  • To quarantine due to exposure to COVID-19 if unable to continue your job duties remotely.
  • Up to 8 hours of PHEL may be used to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine/booster and/or recover from side effects resulting from obtaining the vaccine.

For 2022, PHEL was reset effective Jan. 10. Employees can receive up to 40 hours (prorated based on FTE), depending on their job classification, to use during the 2022 leave year, which runs from Jan. 10, 2022 to Jan. 9, 2023. Any PHEL balances remaining from the 2021 leave year will not be added to the 2022 balance.

Once the allotment of PHEL is used, employees may use appropriate and available leave balances (Traditional or VSDP Sick Leave, Family-Personal Leave, Annual Leave, Compensatory Leave, Overtime Leave, Recognition Leave) or Leave without Pay for COVID-related leave needs.

Please note PHEL could be subject to expiration as the year progresses. Any additional information will be communicated as it becomes available.

For questions regarding leave, please contact the Human Resources Leave Team at

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