Covid-19: UK-based banks announce financial and medical support for employees in India

Barclays and Standard Chartered Bank have announced a slew of measures, including salary advance, enhanced insurance limits and doctors on call, for their employees in India to help them deal with the Covid-19 pandemic.

Barclays has introduced a new set of measures, including facilitating vaccinations, enhanced insurance limits, uncapped paid leave, financial aid and support channels, for its over 20,000 employees in India to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic.

Some of the aforementioned measures will also be available to the families of the London-headquartered Barclays, whose India operations include banking, securities, technology and shared services.

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The Bank, in a statement, said hospitalisation insurance limits have been raised and certain costs not covered by insurance, such as PPE equipment charges, will be covered.

“All employees can take uncapped paid leave to give sufficient time to recuperate from Covid-19, get vaccinated, and for taking care of a family member.

“Junior colleagues will receive one month’s salary in advance to help manage unforeseen expenses,” it added.

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The Bank said employees have access to a 24/7 Covid care helpline, online doctor consultations, a peer-to-peer support network, and a 24/7 confidential helpline that provides free counselling services.

Standard Chartered said its comprehensive benefit programme for its over 25,000 employees in India will include financial reimbursement of expenses incurred towards Covid-19 related medical treatment for parents and parent-in laws up to ₹2.50 lakh per patient with ICU admission and up to ₹1.25 lakh per patient with any other hospitalisation for Covid-19 treatment.

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The London-headquartered Bank said it will provide interest free salary advance of up to six months gross pay to meet the expenses incurred on account of Covid-19 related medical emergencies. The repayment will commence following a six-month moratorium period.

In the unfortunate case of an employee passing away, their family will receive financial protection in the form of four times of the annual gross compensation, Standard Chartered said in statement. This increased insurance cover is applicable to all employees, it added.

On medical support, the Bank has constituted a team to assist employees in the hospitalisation process.

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