The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) said it will grant government health care workers a hazardous-duty allowance of P3,000 per month for work performed starting Sept. 15 until the expiration of a special law authorizing the funding.
The allowance was detailed in Joint Circular (JC) No. 1, s. 2020 issued with the Health department on Friday. It covers government medical staff assigned to hospitals, laboratories, medical and quarantine facilities directly involved in the government’s pandemic containment effort.
A separate joint circular, JC No. 2, s. 2020, also issued Friday, calls for a special risk allowance of P5,000 a month for medical personnel, public and private, assigned to facilities designated for COVID-19 patients.
The hazard pay and special risk allowances are authorized by Republic Act No. 11494, or the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act (Bayanihan II), and will be sourced from budget savings, subject to their availability.
Both allowances will be based on the number of days the health workers reported for duty between Sept. 15 and Dec. 19. It is possible for a government health care worker assigned to COVID duty to receive both allowances.
They do not cover frontliners who do not have employer-employee relationships, and whose salaries were sourced from non-personnel services budgets, except consultants engaged for a limited period; laborers hired through job contracts; student workers and apprentices; and those who were employed through contracts of service or job order who were not assigned to hospitals, laboratories or quarantine facilities.
According to budget documents seen by BusinessWorld, P92.35 billion or 66% of the P140 billion Bayanihan II budget has been released as of Monday. The law, signed on Sept. 19, will expire on Dec. 19. — Beatrice M. Laforga