ECC executive director Stella Zipagan-Banawis (Screengrab from Laging Handa briefing)

MANILA – The Employees Compensation Commission (ECC) on Thursday clarified that employees who have contracted coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) at home are not entitled to work from home compensation benefits.

In a Laging Handa briefing, ECC executive director Stella Zipagan-Banawis said only injuries sustained or deaths due to working from home are covered by the program.

"For instance, you are using your computer and something happened to it, like if it exploded or something, whatever injury that we incurred, we can apply that for EC. Whatever happens to you there, you slipped on the floor, you injured your hands or feet, that is compensable,” she added in a mix of English and Filipino.

She added that EC applications for work-from-home injuries will be evaluated by personnel from the Social Security System (SSS) and the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) to determine if these are really work-related.

Work-from-home injuries that happened within a prescriptive period of three years can also be applied for EC, Zipagan-Banawis said.

She, however, clarified that employees who contracted Covid-19 at work and while commuting to and from the workplace are entitled to EC benefits.

“As of February, 8,000 workers have applied for Covid work-related benefits in SSS and almost the same in GSIS, I would also like to inform those whose applications for EC benefits were approved, they can also apply at the ECC for cash assistance of PHP10,000,” she said.

Employees who would like to avail of the benefits have to submit the following requirements -- application form that can be downloaded from the ECC website, employment certificate, indicating the last time the employee reported to the workplace or when the employee started working from home to determine if the injury is work-related.

Meanwhile, those who contracted Covid-19 at the workplace must submit a swab test result.

“They may also present medical records if they need to reimburse medical cost and if the workers die from Covid, claimants need to present a death certificate. Those are the requirements if the employee got infected that is work-related,” Banawis added. (PNA)