Healthcare employees who have lost their jobs due to lung covid will not receive an advance on their compensation. This was decided by the preliminary relief judge in The Hague on Wednesday. In April, the cabinet will come up with a scheme to accommodate the victims. The trade unions FNV and CNV filed summary proceedings to secure an advance payment and to make the compensation available for more victims. The unions demanded 22,839 euros per person, the standard compensation amount for occupational diseases.
The court finds that collective action is not appropriate; the state must determine the compensation on a case-by-case basis. “There is also no legal basis that obliges the state to enter into consultation with the trade unions,” said the preliminary relief judge.
Healthcare workers who worked in 2020, during the first and second wave of the coronavirus, were advised by the government that, among other things, preventive wearing of face masks was not necessary. That advice was later amended; according to the cabinet, it was still beneficial to take protective measures. Some of the infected healthcare workers contracted lung covid and ended up in the sickness law. The government sees compensation for healthcare workers who contracted lung covid after infection during the first wave as a “moral obligation”. According to the unions, victims who became infected in the second wave should also be compensated.
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