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The ESI Corporation during its 182nd meeting held on 20.08.2020 under the Chairmanship of Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Hon’ble Minister of State for Labour & Employment (Independent Charge), Govt. of India has taken some very important decisions towards improvement in its service delivery mechanism and providing relief to workers affected by Covid-19 pandemic. Following important decisions were taken during the meeting:
- Relaxation in eligibility criteria and enhancement in the payment of relief under Atal Bimit Vyakti Kalyan yojana:
ESIC is implementing the Atal Bimit Vyakti Kalyna Yojna under which unemployment benefit is paid to the workers covered under ESI Scheme. The ESI Corporation has decided to extend the scheme for one more year upto 30th June 2021. It has been decided to relax the existing conditions and the amount of relief for workers who have lost employment during the Covid-19 pandemic period. The enhanced relief under the relaxed conditions will be payable during the period of 24.03.2020 to 31st December 2020. Thereafter the scheme will be available with original eligibility condition during the period 01.01.2021 to 30.06.2021. Review of these conditions will be done after 31.12.2020 depending upon the need and demand for such relaxed condition.
The eligibility criteria for availing the relief has also been relaxed, as under:
A. The payment of relief has been enhanced to 50% of average of wages from earlier 25% of average wages payable upto maximum 90 days of unemployment.
B. Instead of the relief becoming payable 90 days after unemployment, it shall become due for payment after 30 days.
C. The Insured Person can submit the claim directly to ESIC Branch Office instead of the claim being forwarded by the last employer and the payment shall be made directly in the bank account of IP.
D. The Insured Person should have been insurable employment for a minimum period of 2 years before his/her employment and should have contributed for not les than 78 days in the contribution period immediately preceding to unemployment and minimum 78 days in one of the remaining 3 contribution periods in 02 years prior to unemployment.
- Establishment of ICU/HDU services at 10% of total beds in ESIC Hospitals
With a view to strengthen ICU/HDU services in ESIC hospitals amid the Covid-19 pandemic, it has been decided to establish ICU/HDU services upto 10% of total commissioned beds in all ESIC Hospitals.
- Measures taken by ESIC during Covid – 19 pandemic
The members of ESI Corporation in meeting appreciated the actions taken by ESIC towards mitigating the effect of Covid-19 on its stakeholders besides providing its infrastructure for medical care to general public. So far, 23 ESIC hospitals with around 2600 Isolation Beds and aprox 1350 quarantine beds across India are functioning as COVID-19 Dedicated Hospitals to exclusively provide COVID medical services to the general public of the area. In addition to above, around 961 Covid Isolation Beds are available in most of the remaining ESIC Hospitals across the country, making a total of 3597 Covid Isolation Beds in various ESIC Hospitals. Further, a total of 555 ICU/HDU Beds with 213 Ventilators have also been made available in these Hospitals.
B. ESIC Medical College & Hospitals at Faridabad (Haryana), Sanath Nagar, Hyderabad (Telangana), Gulbarga (Karnataka) and ESIC PGIMSR, Basaidarapur (Delhi) have started ICMR approved in-house Covid-19 lab test service.
C. Plasma Therapy treatment is being provide at ESIC Medical College Faridabad (Haryana) and Sanath Nagar, Hyderabad (Telangana).
D. Rapid Covid-18 ANTIGEN TEST has also been started in all major ESIC hospitals of Delhi/NCR regions.
E. Alternate provisions have been made for providing non-Covid medical services from tie-up hospitals to the Insured Persons and their family members.
Besides above, around 30 other agenda/reporting items pertaining to improvement in services/benefits to Insured Persons & their beneficiaries and other administrative matters were deliberated upon and approved during the meeting.
Around 60 members of the Corporation including employers’ representative, employees’ representatives, professional expert and representatives of State Government participated through video conference. The other dignitaries who participated in the meeting were Shri HeeraLal Samariya, Secretary, Labour & Employment, Govt. of India, Shri Ram Kripal Yadav, Hon’ble MP, Smt Dola Sen, Hon’ble MP, Smt. Anuradha Prasad, Director General and Ms. Sibani Swain, AS&FA, Ministry of Labour & Employment.
ESI Scheme in India
The Employees’ State Insurance Corporation is a pioneer Social Security organization providing comprehensive social security benefits like reasonable Medical Care and a range of Cash Benefits in times of need such as employment injury, sickness, death etc. It covers about 3.49 Crores of family units of workers and providing matchless cash benefits and reasonable medical care to its 13.56 crore beneficiaries. Today, its infrastructure has increased many folds with 1520 Dispensaries (including mobile dispensaries)/307 ISM Units and 159 ESI Hospitals, 793 Branch/Pay Offices and 64 Regional & Sub-Regional Offices. The ESI Scheme today stands implemented in 566 districts in 34 states and Union Territories of the country.
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