Taiwan to boost pay for frontline healthcare workers amid COVID-19

CECC to increase pay for frontline medical workers. 

CECC to increase pay for frontline medical workers.  (CNA photo)

Hospital healthcare staff involved in the treatment of COVID-19 coronavirus patients will receive a pay increase in recognition of their hard work and commitment, the Central Epidemic Command Center said Saturday (May 9).

At a daily press briefing, Shih Chung-liang (石崇良), director-general of the health ministry's Department of Medical Affairs, said hospital personnel who attend to quarantined, suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients will be paid an additional amount of up to NT$10,000 (US$335) per shift.

Doctors treating COVID-19 patients will be eligible to an extra NT$10,000 a day, while nursing staff can receive the same amount for each eight-hour shift and NT$5,000 more for each four-hour block of overtime, Shih said.

For X-ray technicians and hospital staff working in infectious disease departments, the additional pay will be NT$10,000 per month, according to Shih.

The bonus is a way of thanking the healthcare staff for their hard work and commitment during the COVID-19 outbreak, he said.

"During this pandemic, we very much appreciate our healthcare workers and their hard work," Shih said.

In addition, all 200 Intermediate Emergency Responsibility Hospitals in Taiwan will each receive additional funds of NT$300,000 to NT$1.2 million per month, depending on their grade, Shih said.

The funds will be used to pay bonuses to emergency room personnel, including medical, administrative, ambulance, and cleaning staff, and social workers, he said.

On a wider scale, hospitals throughout the country will be allocated NT$3,000 per day for every pneumonia patient they admit, and NT$10,000 per day for those that need respirators, Shih said, adding that the funds should be passed on to the workers who look after those patients.

To date, Taiwan has recorded 440 cases of COVID-19, 361 of whom have recovered, while six have died, and the others are in the hospital, according to Central Epidemic Command Center statistics.