MANILA - Healthcare workers of UP-Philippine General Hospital (PGH) will continue to protest until they receive their overdue COVID-19 benefits, a workers' union said Monday.
The hospital's frontliners have yet to receive their hazard pay and special risk allowance (SRA) under the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act which covered the period March 17 to May 31, according to Karen Faurillo, president of All UP Workers Union-Manila.
They will receive P500 or the amount of their usual hazard pay, whichever is higher, per day of duty and an SRA of 25 percent of their basic pay if they worked for 18 days or more during the period covered, Faurillo said.
"Magandang development po na talagang pinakinggan 'yung aming hinaing na ibigay na ito at bigyan ng atensyon. Hangga't di po ito nabibigay ay patuloy na kikilos, magbabantay ang healthcare workers ng PGH at titiyakin na itong allowances na ito ay di na po maaantala," she told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.
(It's a good development that authorities listened to us but until these benefits are not given we will continue to protest and make sure these allowances are not further delayed.)
"At sana po mayroong explanation kung bakit ito nadedelay. May mga kasamahan po kaming nagresign, nagretire, namatay din at nagsilbi habang pandemic. Dapat napakinabangan na nila ito pero dahil sa pagkaantala ng pagbibigay ay hindi na po 'yun mangyayari."
(We hope there will be an explanation for this because many of our colleagues who resigned, retried, and died while battling the pandemic could have used these but because of the delay that won't happen anymore.)
The hospital currently admits less than 100 virus patients but is taking on cases of other illnesses, Faurillo said.
"Yung banta sa kalusugan ay nandyan hanggang nananatili kaming COVID referral center at ospital na naglilingkod sa mga pinakamahirap nating mamamayan," she said.
(The threat to our health remains as long as we remain a COVID referral center and a hospital that serves the poor.)
Some 12,178 healthcare workers have contracted the coronavirus as of Nov. 23, according to the health department. Of the total, 11,910 have recovered while deaths increased to 76 and active cases stood at 192.
The Philippines as of Sunday reported 429,864 cases of COVID-19, with 22,867 active infections.