Finland’s national benefits agency Kela said on Monday that it will pay an infectious disease sickness allowance for persons who are placed in quarantine in EU countries because of a novel coronavirus outbreak.
The allowance covers the loss of earnings caused by being placed in isolation. Kela said that the value of the benefit paid to employees or entrepreneurs quarantined in an EU country would be the same as the allowance paid to persons in Finland who are unable to work because of a quarantine.
However the loss of earnings compensation will not be paid to Finnish residents who find themselves quarantined in non-EU countries.
Last week the agency said that it was looking into the possibility of paying the benefit to Finnish residents quarantined in other EU member states.
Written statement required
Kela pointed out that persons applying for the allowance should provide a written statement from the lead infectious diseases physician at a municipality or hospital district. This statement should confirm that the individual has been placed in isolation or quarantine and barred from going out to work.
This requirement will now apply to persons who are quarantined in other EU member states. Kela will pay the infectious diseases sickness allowance in cases where an employee has been ordered to stay away from the workplace because of an infectious disease such as novel coronavirus.
The benefit is intended to cover the loss of earnings arising from the inability to report to work due to a quarantine or isolation order.
The sum is calculated based on the amount the employee would have received had they been at work.
In the case of self-employed persons, the compensation is based on the annual income reported for the purpose of paying entrepreneur’s statutory pension insurance contributions (YEL or MYEL).
The agency said that it has so far not received any applications for the allowance.