President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the grant of daily duty allowances to government workers who had volunteered in Covid-19 “mega-swabbing” facilities in the country.

According to Administrative Order No. 31 Duterte signed on June 15, volunteers will receive allowances not exceeding P500 per day plus a maximum of 25 percent of each person’s monthly basic salary (MBS).

“In response to the call for volunteers, a number of government personnel have been enlisted to work in the mega swabbing facilities and other designated Covid-19 swabbing and test results processing facilities, where exposure to health risks is an occupational hazard,” Duterte’s order stated.

Government personnel occupying regular, contractual or casual positions or those engaged through contract of service, job orders and similar schemes are eligible for the grant.

The subsidy will be effective from the beginning of operations of the mega swabbing centers and other designated swabbing and test results processing facilities.

The 25 percent of MBS per person will be pro-rated based on the number of days that a government personnel is deployed in the designated facility during the quarantine period, the order said.

Workers deployed for three to seven days will be eligible for 25 percent of the incentive; those deployed for 8 to 12 days will receive 50 percent; those who worked for 13 to 17 days will get 75 percent; and those who served for 18 or more days will be eligible for the full amount of the grant.

Personnel entitled to hazard pay and other similar benefits will be entitled to such benefits and the duty allowance, whichever is higher.

Four mega swabbing facilities are operational, located in Enderun Colleges in Taguig City, Philippine Arena in Bulacan, Mall of Asia in Pasay City and Palacio de Maynila in Manila. John Ezekiel J. Hirro