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Duterte extends special risk pay grant to med workers

President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday extended until end of June the grant of special risk allowance to private and public health workers “directly” attending to coronavirus patients.

Under Administrative Order No. 42, the President ordered national government agencies and local government units, as well as government-owned and -controlled corporations, to further grant special risk incentives to medical workers in recognition of their “heroic and invaluable” contributions amid the pandemic.

His latest order amended AO 36 he had issued last year, which stated that workers would receive their special risk allowance for the number of days they physically reported for work in a month from 15 September until 19 December 2020.

According to Duterte’s new AO, the grant of the Covid-19 allowance “shall be pro-rated based on the number of days that the public and private health workers physically report for work in a month, as certified by the head of the hospital, laboratory, or medical and quarantine facilities or his/her authorized representative, reckoned from 15 September 2020 until 30 June 2021.”

“All claims for the payment of the special risk allowance to public and private health workers shall be validated by the Department of Health,” Duterte said.

The funds needed for the implementation of the President’s latest order would be sourced from the P13.5 billion appropriated under the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act or Republic Act 11494, Duterte added.

The Department of Budget and Management, he said, should release the funds for health workers’ special risk pay.

Included in the order were medical and other health-allied professionals occupying regular, contractual, or casual positions, workers engaged through a contract of service or job order and registered barangay health workers assigned to hospitals and laboratories.

According to the order, those qualified for additional allowance were workers physically reporting at their assigned work stations on the prescribed official working hours as authorized by the head of agency or office — which placed them in direct contact with Covid-19 patients.

The private health workers should be assigned to designated Covid-19 units of hospitals, laboratories, or quarantine facilities as certified by the DOH.

Meanwhile, those engaged without employer-employee relationships and funded from non-personnel services appropriations were excluded from the order.

The President said AO 42 would take effect immediately following its publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation.

Healthcare workers bear a much greater risk of exposure to Covid-19 than other economic frontliners.

At the time Duterte first granted a special risk pay to medical professionals, about five percent of all coronavirus patients in the Philippines belong to them.

The country has so far recorded 1.23 million coronavirus cases with over 21,000 fatalities.

mje

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Credit belongs to : www.tribune.net.ph

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