Health and safety risk assessment

Coronavirus risk assessment template


The coronavirus pandemic presents new health and safety challenges for businesses. You have a legal duty to take steps to protect your workers and the public. Most businesses will need to review their health and safety risk assessment in light of the pandemic.

The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) has an example risk assessment template that shows the kind of approach HSENI expects a small business or workplace to take when carrying out a risk assessment for coronavirus in the workplace.

Access the HSENI’s example COVID-19 risk assessment template

Carry out an effective risk assessment 

Businesses should use the template as a guide to consider the:

  • the additional hazard that coronavirus introduces into your business
  • steps you need to take to control the risks

A risk assessment is only effective if you and your staff act on it. You must follow through with any actions required and review them on a regular basis.

Ensure your risk assessment meets your business needs

Every business is different - you need to think about the hazards and control measures your business needs to take to keep workers safe and healthy. Different businesses will need to adopt different control measures to meet their particular workplace conditions.

See prevent the spread of coronavirus for advice on measures to control the risks of coronavirus in your business, such as social distancing.

You should ensure that you follow the latest advice from the Public Health Agency and incorporate this information into your risk assessment.

For more information on how your business can help prevent the spread of coronavirus, see Coronavirus: working safely in different business settings

Special considerations for vulnerable workers

As part of your coronavirus risk assessment, you should consider the risk to workers who are particularly vulnerable to coronavirus and put in place controls to reduce their risk. 

You must carry out a risk assessment for pregnant employees.  

Where a significant health and safety risk is identified for pregnant workers, employers should adjust the working conditions or hours to remove the risk, where reasonably practicable to do so or offer alternative work on the same terms and conditions. If this cannot be done, employers should suspend pregnant workers on full pay. This is in line with normal requirements.