Google mandates Covid testing for people entering its US offices

Google has announced that it will be mandating weekly Covid tests for all its employees and people entering its offices in the US. “To help prevent the further spread of COVID-19 during this period of heightened risk, we’re implementing new temporary health and safety measures for anyone accessing our sites in the US,” a Google spokesperson said.

The new policy has been implemented as cases in the US continue to surge. Recently, a health official said that the Omicron variant is so contagious that most people in the US will be infected. 

To make it convenient for their employees, Google provides free at-home and in-person testing options. 

Earlier, Google said that it was delaying its return-to-office plan globally from January as cases soared.

Google has also been very strict about its vaccination policy. The tech giant had told its employees that they would lose pay and eventually be fired if they do not follow its vaccination rules. 

Also read | Omicron a natural disaster, most Americans will get COVID-19: US health officials

Meanwhile, the authorities in the US have said that they are hoping that the surge will lessen rapidly, even as Omicron sets new records for new cases, and that the US should focus on ensuring that healthcare systems do not collapse as a result of the surge. 

The Omicron variant, which has numerous key mutations, has spread swiftly over the world and shattered records for new daily cases in the US.

According to the CDC, the variant is currently responsible for more than 98 per cent of Covid cases in the US as it has now replaced the Delta variant in less than a month. 

(With inputs from agencies)