Front-line medics' pay to be increased at least 20%

During a coalition meeting, a proposal to boost front-line medics' pay during the Covid-19 outbreak was approved unanimously, PM Krišjānis Kariņš told Latvian Radio March 24. 

This will cover about 4,500 healthcare workers.

According to Health Minister Ilze Viņķele, the extra pay will apply to State Emergency Medical Service, specialists at the Disease Prevention and Control Center, epidemiologists who carry out tests, people who make calls about the test results, lab employees, admissions office employees at hospitals, and employees of the Latvian Infectology Center.

"The bonus will be no less than 20% and will be paid for a certain amount of time," said Viņķele. 

Precise details over the funding are being discussed March 24. 

The National Alliance party told the press that the coalition is pondering to boost pay at least for three months, starting March. The period may be extended later on. 

PM Kariņš said he's pleased that the support for the decision was unanimous. He added that the government will discuss further support measures for people who are out of work and for self-employed people. The first pay-outs under the government support program are slated to start this week, he said.

Earlier the government announced a comprehensive package of support measures for businesses and employees affected by the novel coronavirus outbreak. 

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