OLD Mutual has announced life cover worth ZW$2 billion for six months to benefit health professionals on the front line of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The initiative by the financial services provider and its subsidiaries including CABS is also expected to support innovations in tertiary education institutions to address immediate and long-term impacts of the spread of Covid-19.
The package will provide life cover for healthcare workers from April 2020 to September 30 2020. Old Mutual will provide 12 times monthly basic salary to the surviving families of the health professionals in the event of death.
Covid-19-related death and accidental death will be covered immediately, whilst death from any other causes will have a three- month waiting period, according to the scheme.
Health professionals have been putting their lives in danger by working without adequate protective clothing, but have not been getting risk allowance and insurance cover.
Demotivated nurses have been resigning from public health facilities designated to deal with Covid-19, particularly at Wilkins Hospital in Harare, the main national response centre.
Old Mutual CE Sam Matsekete said the financial services group’s shareholder will pay up premiums to cover the lives of health professionals registered under this cover for six months.
“Unlike with traditional cover offered, this is neither a product nor a policy and no premiums will be recovered on it during the six months free period. To qualify, health professionals have to register with Old Mutual to receive free cover for six months. Health professionals will be offered the opportunity to continue the cover beyond six months at a discounted cost,” Matsekete said in a statement.
“In addition, as a responsible business, Old Mutual together with its banking subsidiary CABS have put together a further ZW$3,5 million towards the fight against Covid-19. The Group will provide healthcare staff at Harare Hospital and at Thorngroove in Bulawayo with protective gear, and will assist Africa University in Mutare and Chinhoyi University of Science Education to ramp up production of sanitisers and face masks respectively.”
Old Mutual together with CABS announced that they will also be providing 300 protective kits to health workers at Sally Mugabe Central Hospital (formerly Harare Central Hospital) and 200 at Thorngrove Hospital in Bulawayo.
According to the statement from Old Mutual, each protective kit being produced locally will include two PVC aprons, two cotton gowns, 10 respirators, 10 overshoes and one box of latex gloves.
The protective gear is being locally produced and the producer has assured adherence to relevant health standards. Delivery of the material to the medical institutions will be completed next week.