Inside OCBC Bank’s vaccination benefits for staff

‘We understand the stress that comes from having to make this decision’

Inside OCBC Bank’s vaccination benefits for staff

OCBC Bank is expanding its employee care programme with new benefits for those who will take the vaccine against COVID-19.

A total of 10,000 employees in Singapore will be covered by the vaccination support programme, which includes additional time off and the option to work from home after immunisation.

Employees can take the day off each time they receive a dose, and work remotely for one week after. They will also be reimbursed for their transportation costs in going to the vaccination centre.

Read more: No jab, no job? Employer mulls mandatory vaccination for staff

For workers who develop side effects from inoculation, the company will cover their medical consultation fees and provide them with two additional sick days – apart from their existing medical leave credits – which can be taken without having to present a doctor’s certificate.

The bank is also raising awareness about the science behind immunisation.

“OCBC Bank has engaged medical experts to educate its employees about the COVID-19 vaccine, its side effects, its efficacy, its effectiveness against new virus variants and how vaccination will affect safe distancing regulations and lifestyles,” the company said.

The discussion serves as an avenue for employees to speak more openly about their concerns and to seek guidance from a medical expert before they decide to take the vaccine.

Read more: Retailer to pay frontline staff to get COVID vaccine

“While the decision for taking a COVID-19 vaccination is very personal, we want to help our employees come to a decision based on sound medical advice,” said Jason Ho, head of group human resources at OCBC Bank.

“For those who want to go ahead with it, we will provide the necessary support to them because we understand the anxiety and stress that comes from having to make such a decision.”

The initiatives expand the benefits already included in the company’s COVID-19 Care Package from March 2020. The package offers:

  • Financial support and additional hospitalisation benefits for COVID+ employees
  • Allowing the use of carried-forward leave to be extended
  • Vouchers for private transportation to and from the clinic
  • Virtual teleconsultations with doctors

“Throughout this pandemic, the welfare and resilience of our workforce has been at the forefront of our management team’s minds, given the challenging circumstances we all find ourselves in,” Ho said. “We have always believed in taking care of our people in good times, and especially in bad times like this.”

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