Risk allowance will be disbursed once data is approved: Finance Ministry

Risk allowance will be disbursed once data is approved: Finance Ministry

Ministry of Finance stated Thursday that the risk allowance allocated for frontline workers in the COVID-19 response will be issued as soon as their data has been approved.

The ministry's Media Executive Mohamed Shanoon explained that the data on frontline workers are supplied by their respective offices and institutions to the National Emergency Operation Centre (NEOC), which will evaluate and confirm the information before forwarding it to the finance ministry for approval.

Shanoon stated that the procedure is presently at the NEOC stage. He assured that once the finance ministry has received and approved the data, the funds will be disbursed.

Finance Minister Ibrahim Ameer announced the government's special allowance for high risk persons working on the front lines of Maldives’ COVID-19 response in early May.

According to the minister, frontline workers are divided into three categories. The first category are those subjected to the highest risk, such as individuals who come into direct contact with COVID-19 patients, including doctors, nurses, sample collectors, laboratory technicians, those who operate the vehicles in which positive and suspected individuals are transferred and those who enter COVID-19 treatment facilities.

Those in the first category will receive an allowance of MVR 500 for every working day.

Medium risk frontliners fall into the second catergory, including those who have to work with high-risk individuals although they do not come into contact with COVID-19 patients. Those in this category will receive a daily allowance of MVR 250 for every working day.

Frontliners that do not fit into either of the aforementioned categories but work in NEOC for more than six hours each day will receive an allowance of MVR 200.

As Maldives entered a new phase to begin adapting to the new normal on July 1, the NEOC was dissolved and its operations and mandate handed over to the Health Emergency Operation Centre (HEOC) under the Ministry of Health.

Maldives presently records total of 2,382 confirmed cases, out of which 414 are active cases of COVID-19. Thus far, the country records 1,954 recoveries and ten fatalities.

On March 12, WHO classified the spread of COVID-19 as a global pandemic. To date, the new strain of novel coronavirus has infected over 10.8 million people and claimed over 519,100 lives around the world. However, out of those infected, more than 6 million people have recovered.