Employers have been urged to top up pay so workers on emergency coronavirus illness benefit get a full wage "as a minimum".
The Government urged all employers to support national public health objectives by making up the difference between a higher €305 a week illness benefit rate and normal wages.
It said employees who cannot attend work due to Covid-19 illness or self-isolation should get full pay.
The message in new guidelines for workers and employers issued by the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection said this may be achieved through flexible working arrangements.
This could include compassionate leave, allowing an employee to work remotely, or allowing a staff member to "work up" time taken at a future date.
It also said employees could be allowed to avail of annual leave entitlements, and parental leave could be rearranged.