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Kerala: RCC Doctors condemn in-house pension scheme
Thiruvananthapuram: The employees of the Regional Cancer Centre in Thiruvananthapuram have long been affected by the issue of the organization's pension plan, which the employees have been opposing calling them "unviable and inequitable".Various litigations are reported to be pending in the High Court and the issue has been getting talked about since 2016, reports the Hindu. The management of...
Thiruvananthapuram: The employees of the Regional Cancer Centre in Thiruvananthapuram have long been affected by the issue of the organization's pension plan, which the employees have been opposing calling them "unviable and inequitable".
Various litigations are reported to be pending in the High Court and the issue has been getting talked about since 2016, reports the Hindu. The management of the RCC is alleged to be implementing the schemes forcefully and at times has been refusing to give appointment orders until the staff members enroll in the scheme.
Also Read:HC directs Govt to review pension age of AYUSH doctors
In December 2020, a meeting was held with the health secretary where it was decided that the scheme should be sent for an acturial analysis and that a professional agency engaged in fund management be selected for creating a new pension scheme suitable to an institution like the RCC. However, the Doctors' Association of RCC said that the management has done very little to address the issues.
In addition to the issues with the pension scheme, the doctors are reported to be unhappy as the RCC administration has done very little to rectify the anomalies in the salary matrix of doctors following the implementation of the 7th pay commission recommendations. After a recent Government Order, the doctors have been denied Travel Allowance and their House Rent Allowance has been further capped. The other issues include the stoppage of promotion interviews and the disparity in retirement age between professors and other doctors.
The association said, "Since 2016, we have been drawing a lower salary and requesting this correction. The issue is being ignored by the government because we are apparently a "society", while the RCC website claims that we are a State-owned institute. Hence, we have no medical reimbursement, our terminal retirement benefits are taxable, we have absolutely no private practice and none of the State benefits."
Additional Director (Administration), A. Sajeed said that the grievances presented by the doctor are issues that affect everyone and are under the government's consideration currently. He said, "It is only a question of process delay."
The doctors at RCC were planning a protest in this regard on July 1 on Doctors' Day but are dissuaded by the government's promise of interacting and sorting out the doctors' issues.
The RCC is unable to earn enough revenue to sustain itself, reports the Hindu. Nearly 80% of patients seeking treatment at RCC opt for treatment under the cashless Karunya insurance scheme, with only 5% under the paying category, which now seems to be further deteriorating due to difficulty in getting timely care for the patients. The government also owes crores of rupees to public hospitals as Karunya reimbursement, of which RCC is a part. Thus, the centre is currently running in a cost-cutting mode, which is making patient care difficult.
Back in 2016, the Doctors Association of Regional Cancer Centre urged the State Government to institute a scientific pension scheme or direct the RCC to adopt the National Pension Scheme than experiment with the "suicidal" in-house scheme, as per a Deccan Chronicle report.
Also Read: Review Pension Age of AYUSH doctors, Decide within three months: HC tells Govt
Revu is currently pursuing her masters from University of Hyderabad. With a background in journalism, she joined Medical Dialogues in 2021.