The vpod public services trade union has welcomed the award of a COVID-19 bonus at the Cantonal (regional) hospital in Zug. The allocation of CHFr 1.2 million (EUR 1.1m) will mean the 1000-strong staff will get about CHFr 1000 each (EUR 1080). The union argues that such payments should be applied more broadly across the sector and launched a campaign at the end of February targeting 300 health institutions in three other cantons – St Gallen, Thurgau and Appenzell. The vpod stresses the fact that this is a special payment and doesn’t deflect from the need for much better pay and conditions for health workers to address the shortage of staff across the sector.
Union pushes for wider application of COVID-19 bonuses
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The OSZSP health union and doctors' union have called on the minister of health to ensure that bonus payments for working with COVID-19 patients are paid to all relevant staff across the health and social care sectors. The payments were agreed and confirmed by the minister of labour but the health minister has only contacted directly-managed teaching hospitals and a small number of other facilities to pay the allowance which ranges from 100 (3,70 EUR) to 500 (18,50 EUR) and up to 1500 CZK (EUR 55,30) an hour. The unions underline that all staff on the frontline should benefit whether
Portuguese health workers are the latest to get a bonus (50% of basic pay) for their work in working in the emergency situation created by the COVID-19 pandemic. In the Netherlands all care workers get €1000 while in Germany so far it has only been workers in eldercare who get a €1500 payment. In Belgium, some health workers are getting €300 while workers in private health and social care in Austria received €500, the same as frontline staff in Bulgaria. In the UK all care workers in Wales have received a payment of €570. In contrast to these lump sums, the COVID-19 payments for health staff
While welcoming the proposal to pay care staff a bonus for their work in the fight against COVID-19, the ver.di services union warns that current plans could exclude some workers who were exposed to high levels of stress during the pandemic. The union says that it is appropriate for the Ministry of Health to set rules for how the bonus is distributed to avoid variations in payment across different employers. However, there is a risk that some caregivers will lose out along with large groups of workers in the emergency services, psychiatric hospitals, rehabilitation clinics and in disability