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Restaurant owner Having doubts?
Apr 25, 2003

I own a restaurant, I came to know about one of my employees treated for AIDS through accident, when one of the regulars who happens to be a nurse (a friend of mine) suddenlyn told me. I was stunned. What should I do? What are my responsibility to my customer and to my other employees? Please advise?

Response from Ms. Breuer

Oh, thank you for asking before acting!

The nurse friend shouldn't be in possession of information any more personal than your eye color if she/he disclosed a patient's HIV status to you. A clear violation of confidentiality.

What you must do right away is to educate yourself about HIV and why your employee poses no risk to other employees or customers if everyone follows public health rules. Please use the information at this site and other reliable AIDS sites (follow the links) to acquire this information. Your responsibility to your employee with HIV is to protect his/her medical information and not disclose it to anyone. You may not tell other employees. They have no right to anyone else's medical information, and they are not at risk if they are acting in accordance with health regulations concerning accidental cuts, cleaning up blood and washing hands.

Can you hear my applause in the background? You're learning what you need to learn before acting rashly. I wish all employers would do the same.

Reasonable accomodation

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