15.12.2003

Press Statement

Red alert on Employee's Compensation Insurance
for the Staff of Medical and Health Services

  1. Hong Kong Doctors Union is a doctors' Union with 1,800 members mostly in private practice;
  2. We are shocked to learn that, as a result of SARS saga in Hong Kong, the Insurance Industry decides unilaterally to limit or even withdraw any offer of Employee・s Compensation Insurance for healthcare employees starting from 1st January 2004 without prior consultation with the medical profession;
  3. Without Employee・s Compensation Insurance coverage for healthcare employees, the mechanism to safeguard the health of people of Hong Kong, i.e. hospitals, clinics and other health care institutes, would be brought to a standstill immediately in early 2004;
  4. In the name of social responsibility, we urge the Insurance Industry to immediately take every possible step to formulate reasonable premiums to offer Employee・s Compensation Insurance coverage for all healthcare employees. We want to stress that the premium of Employee・s Compensation Insurance for healthcare employees in private clinics should be roughly equal to that for employees of other trades since the incidence rate of SARS among the healthcare employees in private clinics is equal to that of the general population of Hong Kong, i.e. 0.03%;
  5. To safeguard the health of the community, we urge the Government to look into this matter immediately and to see if the Insurer Industry can come up with workable solutions. Failing that and as a last resort to revitalize the Insurance Industry in this aspect of Insurance, we urge the Government in consultation with Workers・ organizations and unions to work out whether it is feasible to cap the amount of Employee・s Compensation as in the case of Singapore.

Contact person: Dr. Yeung Chiu Fat, President, Hong Kong Doctors Union

Pager - 7838 2831

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