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2021 special risk allowance has not yet reached some health workers —nurses group

The Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) on Sunday said the special risk allowance (SRA) for this year has not yet been received by some health workers.

PNA president Melbert Reyes told Super Radyo dzBB they have heard the complaints of some health workers about the delay in the issuance of their SRA.

"Marami ang nagrereklamo na hindi pa rin nila natatanggap ang kanilang special risk allowance simula January 2021 hanggang June 2021," he said.

(Many are complaining that they have not yet received their special risk allowance from January 2021 up to June 2021.)

"Patong-patong ang ibinibigay na allowances sa health workers. Ang problema ay ang implementasyon," Reyes said.

(They give allowances for health workers but the problem is in the implementation.)

"Maraming-marami pang nurses ang hindi pa nakatatanggap ng SRA," he added.

(A lot of nurses have not yet received the SRA.)

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) in June said P9.02 billion has been released to the Department of Health (DOH) for the SRA of medical workers from December 2020 to June 30, 2021.

DBM Assistant Secretary Kim Robert de Leon said then the department released to the DOH on June 25 the funds, which provides monthly allowance of up to P5,000 for over 300,000 health workers both in private and public hospitals taking care of COVID-19 patients.

The DOH then said the P9-billion worth of special risk allowance has been released to regional offices and hospitals ahead of the expiry of the Bayanihan 2 law on June 30. 

Reyes appealed to the government to address the delay in the release of the allowance.

"Sana naman matignan kami at mabigyan kami ng atensyon ng gobyerno... Na-release naman na ang budget pero bakit kailangan pang ma-delay," he added.

(We hope the government can look into this and attend to it. The budget was already released but why is there a delay?)

Reyes also said all health workers are already tired due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Lahat ng health workers, hindi lamang nurses ay pagod na... Lalong nadoble ang work load ng mga health workers simula nang pumasok ang pandemya," he said.

(All health workers, not just nurses, are tired already. The workload doubled since the pandemic started.)

Some health workers in fact decided to work in call centers due to the higher pay, he said.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Friday said he will look into reports that some healthcare workers have not yet received their SRA even for the year 2020. —KG, GMA News