The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), and the Insurance Commission are set to jointly promote public awareness on the coverage and benefits of compulsory insurance for agency-hired overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).
In an agreement signed by OWWA Administrator Hans Leo J. Cacdac, POEA Officer-In-Charge Dominador R. Say, and Insurance Commissioner Dennis B. Funa, a sub-module on the agency-hired overseas Filipino worker compulsory insurance benefits will be incorporated in the Pre-Employment Orientation Seminar (PEOS) and Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) provided by the POEA and OWWA, respectively.
“This memorandum of understanding is very important because of its advocacy component. Many still do not know that there is an existing insurance package or benefit for overseas workers, especially for the newly-hired OFWs. So POEA, OWWA, and Insurance Commission have joined forces to come up with a massive information campaign,” said OWWA Administrator Cacdac.
The Compulsory Insurance Coverage for Agency-Hired Workers states that each migrant worker deployed by a recruitment or manning agency shall be covered by a compulsory insurance policy which shall be secured at no cost to said worker.
This is pursuant to Section 37–A of RA No. 8042, as amended by RA No. 10022, otherwise known as Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995.
The insurance policy shall be effective for the duration of the migrant worker’s employment contract and shall cover, at the minimum: accidental death, natural death, permanent total disablement, repatriation cost, subsistence allowance, money claims, compassionate visit, medical evacuation, and medical repatriation.
The information on the said compulsory insurance shall be incorporated in the PEOS and PDOS.
The PEOS, which targets those who are contemplating on working abroad, provides general information on the pros and cons of overseas employment; guidelines, legal procedures, and documentary requirements of applying for an overseas job; overseas job opportunities and jobs that are restricted; tips to avoid illegal recruitment; advisories and warnings to OFWs; health and security issues; and government services available to overseas job applicants and hired workers.
On the other hand, the PDOS, which is provided to OFWs prior to their departure, seeks to prepare them to cope with living and working abroad; inform them of their rights and responsibilities; and provide them with necessary information to facilitate travel to, and adjustment within, the worksite and host country.
The memorandum of understanding was signed during the Insurance Commission’s 68th Anniversary Celebration at the Insurance Commission Grounds, UN Avenue, Manila.