Following the release of Board Resolution No. 21-04-14 on the Conditions for the Compensability of COVID-19 under the ECC List of Occupational and Work-Related Diseases or Annex A of the Amended Rules on Employees’ Compensation (EC), more and more frontliners have received their benefits under the EC Program (ECP).
Under the said Resolution, a worker who contracted COVID-19 due to working conditions, may avail of disability benefits, medical benefits, and cash assistance. In case of death of a worker, his or her dependents are also entitled to death and funeral benefits under the EC Program.
As of June 2021, 26 new applications for the COVID-19, Cash Assistance Program in Eastern Visayas were approved by the ECC. Most of these workers are frontliners from several healthcare facilities in Eastern Visayas and others are uniformed personnel from the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP).
“As members of the BFP, my wife and I did not expect that we can avail of the Employees’ Compensation Program benefit. We were surprised to know that we were covered under the ECP despite not being members of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS).” Senior Fire Officer I John Michael Lamoste shared.
“We are extremely thankful that the ECC Regional Extension Unit (REU) 8 has arranged a webinar with the BFP Regional Office 8 and it became an avenue for us to learn more about the program. Upon hearing about the benefits, my wife and I immediately filed our EC claims through the GSIS. We were able to receive our EC disability benefits from the GSIS and the additional ₱10, 000.00 cash assistance through Keren-Beth Engcoy. We are deeply grateful to the ECC for the assistance they have extended to us,” SF01 Lamoste added.
“Since the launching of the Cash Assistance Program, the ECC has been able to release cash benefits to thousands of healthcare workers, frontliners, seafarers and essential workers,” ECC Executive Director Stella Zipagan-Banawis said. “The program was primarily crafted to help alleviate the financial burdens of workers suffering from work-related illneses, injuries or death. To date, we are continuously processing cash assistance and have instituted several mechanisms to simplify the processing of EC claims. The issuance of Board Resolution No. 21-04-14 is a landmark policy that will benefit thousands of worker, both from the private and government sector,” Director Banawis added.
M.Basal – REU8