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Sunday, October 15, 2017

Issues Raised By AIBEA before IBA

CIRCULAR No. 28/31/2017/31                                       14-10-2017


Dear Comrades,

Discussion on Group Medical Insurance Scheme

We are aware that during the last wage revision process, due to the persistent efforts of UFBU, the entire expenses incurred on medical expenses/ hospitalisation reimbursement incurred by the Banks were accounted outside the wage cost negotiated by us as well as the new Group Medical Insurance Scheme was introduced.  Under this Scheme, all employees and officers were covered by a Group Medical Insurance policy with the United India Insurance Company as lead insurer.  

Under this Policy, workman employees were covered upto Rs. 3 lacs and officers upto Rs. 4 lacs with a provision for an additional buffer cover in cases of claims over and above these amounts. The scheme also included payment of Rs. One lac to employees/officers involved in certain critical illness. Under this scheme, the entire premium for the Policy would be paid by the Banks.

After a lot of efforts by UFBU and discussions with IBA, it was agreed that the scheme will be extended to the retirees also subject to payment of the agreed premium.  

Thus, nearly 23 lacs employees, officers, their dependent family members, retirees and their spouse were brought under the coverage of the scheme.

The scheme became effective for employees/officers from 1-10-2015 and for retirees from 1-11-2015.  Last year, the Policy was renewed from 1-10-2016 to 30-9-2017 for employees/officers and from 1-11-2016 to 31-10-2017 for the retirees.

Again, this year, the Policy has been renewed for the workman employees/ officers from 1-10-2017 to 30-9-2018 without any change in the premium.

For the retirees also, the UIIC has agreed to renew the Policy with the same premium rates for those not covered by domiciliary cover but with an enhanced premium for those covered with domiciliary expenses coverage.

In addition, UIIC has also offered a Super Top Up Policy under which additional cover of Rs. 4 lacs for workman retirees and Rs. 5 lacs for officer retirees will be available on payment of the additional premium.

In the meantime, our unions, employees, officers and retirees have been experiencing various difficulties in the implementation of the Scheme at the hands of hospitals, TPAs, UIIC and also with the bank managements.  There have been instances of unilateral rejections of claims, undue delay in settlement of claims, hurdles in availing cashless benefit, one-sided interpretations besides increase in the premium rates.

On our taking up the issue from the UFBU with the IBA during the current wage revision talks, IBA agreed to hold an exclusive meeting to discuss these issues in the presence of UIIC and all the seven TPAs who are dealing with our Policy.

Discussions with IBA:  Accordingly, a special meeting was convened by IBA on 6-10-2017, in which besides representatives of IBA and UFBU, the representatives of UIIC, KM Dastur and TPAs were also present.

During the discussions, we brought to the attention of IBA, UIIC and TPAs the various problems being faced by the employees/officers/retirees.  Some of the important issues raised by us were as under:

  • Copy of the Master Policy should be available to the Unions for their information and pursuing any adverse clause and provisions.
  • The Scheme and Policy should be exactly on the lines of our Settlement
  • The administration and implementation of the scheme to be more friendly to the employees/officers/retirees to remove the present hassles.
  • Proper guidelines should be given for utilisation and availment under the buffer.
  • Brochure must be provided to the employees/officers on the salient features of the scheme as many are not aware of the details.
  • Special communication should be sent to all Banks/branches on the benefit of exgratia for critical illnesses.
  • ID cards should be given to all employees/officers/retirees/family members covered by the Policy.
  • Definition of family should be in conformity with the settlement.
  • Proper clarification of coverage under domiciliary treatment.
  • Premium for retirees to be revised and reduced.
  • Premium for family pensioners, substaff/PTS retirees and pre-1986 retirees to be reduced and lesser than normal premium for other retirees.
  • Synchronization/common date of the policy for employees/officers and retirees.
  • More and more hospitals to be covered under cashless tie-up.
  • Extension of Super Top-up benefit for retirees.
  • Inclusion of dental treatment under the policy
  • Services being rendered by the TPAs to be adequately toned up.
  • Reimbursement of claims within stipulated time and without any delay.
  • Availability of TPA representatives on Sundays and holidays.
  • Managements should liaise with TPAs/UIIC and ensure effective implementation of scheme instead of pushing the employees/officers to the doors of TPAs.
All the points raised by us were taken note of by the IBA and UIIC and it was agreed by them that these issues will be addressed earnestly.

Overall, the meeting was useful to take up all these issues and we hope that there would be perceptible improvement in implementation of the Scheme.
With greetings,

Yours Comradely,

IDBI Bank employees along with the members of various bank unions would hold a two day strike later this month demanding wage revision.
The wage revision for employees and officers of IDBI Bank is due from November 1, 2012 to October 31, 2017 on the lines of settlement in all other banks, AIBEA General Secretary, CH Venkatachalam said in a statement.
Noting that the wage revision was already settled in other banks, he said, the negotiation talks were underway for next wage revision due from November one, 2017.The all India strike in IDBI Banks will be conducted on October 24 and 25 by employees and officers demanding "overdue wage revision", he said.

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