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Saturday, January 22, 2022

SSS: COVID-hit members can avail of sickness benefits

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

The Social Security System (SSS) announces that it provides sickness benefits to members who cannot work due to sickness or injury, including those who contracted the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Aurora C. Ignacio said that the sickness benefit is a daily cash allowance paid for the number of days that a member cannot work due to sickness or injury.

Under the program, a member must have paid at least three monthly contributions within the last 12 months prior to the semester of sickness or injury, may be confined either in a hospital or at home for at least four days, has used up all his current company sick leaves for the current year and has notified his employer regarding his sickness or injury.

“We are aware that many of our members are getting sick right now. Some of them even got infected by the current Omicron variant. We want to assure them that SSS is providing them with sickness benefit to augment their lost income,” Ignacio said.

Employed, self-employed, voluntary, and overseas Filipino worker (OFW) members could avail of the sickness benefit which is granted up to a maximum of 120 days in one calendar year to qualified members.

For example, Juan dela Cruz got sick for ten days this January 2022. The semester of his sickness will be from October 2021 to March 2022 while the last 12 months before the semester of his sickness will be from October 2020 to September 2021. He should have paid at least three monthly contributions for this period to qualify for the sickness benefit.

For those members who contracted COVID-19, they must provide a positive Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test.

The daily cash allowance is equivalent to 90% of the member’s average daily salary credit (ADSC). For example, if the total of member’s six highest monthly salary credit (MSC) for the 12 months is P96,000, he will have an ADSC of P533.33, and 90% of his ADSC will be P480, which is his daily sickness allowance (DSA). Then, multiply the DSA or P480 by the approved number of days (example ten days), to get the member’s total sickness benefit which is P4,800.

For humanitarian consideration, for contingencies starting March 2020, SSS extended the filing period for the sickness notifications and sickness benefit claims of members and employers.

With the extension, SSS is giving its members 60 calendar days after the lifting of the community quarantine to submit their Sickness Notification Forms of their home confinement to their employers. Normally, SSS would give them five calendar days to submit the said form to their employers.

For employers, SSS is giving them 60 calendar days after the receipt of the notification form from the employee to submit this to the SSS. If the country is still on community quarantine on the last day of submission, the employer may still submit the said form within 60 days after the lifting of the community quarantine. Under normal circumstances, employers should submit this form to the SSS within five calendar days after receiving it from their employees.

For self-employed, voluntary, and Overseas Filipino Worker members, they can submit their Sickness Benefit Application Forms for their home confinement to SSS within 60 calendar days after the lifting of the community quarantine.

Effective July 2020, employers may file their Sickness Benefit Reimbursement Applications (SBRAs) using their My.SSS accounts.

Before they could use the online facility, employers must have a registered My.SSS account and enrolled disbursement account in the SSS Disbursement Account Enrollment Module (DAEM). They should also have an SSS-approved sickness notification of their employees and they have paid in advance the sickness benefit to their employees.

Employers must log in to their My.SSS account, proceed to the E-Services tab and click on "Submit SS Sickness Benefit Reimbursement Application (SBRA)."

On December 27, 2021, the online filing of Sickness Notification (SN) and Sickness Benefit Application (SBA) were implemented together with the enhanced online filing of SBRA.

Online filing of the SN and SBA allowed employers and individually filing members to submit their application forms in the comfort of their homes or offices without having to go to the branches. The program is among the E-services available in their My.SSS account and required the filers to upload scanned documents such as medical certificate and other supporting medical documents.

On the other hand, under the enhanced online filing of SBRA, system shall display all approved SNs of employees of the particular employer. After this, employer shall select the claim reference number from the list and then, click proceed.

Employer must fill out the necessary additional information and tick the certification checkbox to certify that the information provided is true and correct and that the amount of benefit was paid in advance to the employee in accordance with the Social Security Law before clicking submit and OK.

SSS will send a notification to the registered email address of the employer stating that the application was submitted successfully with the transaction details of their reimbursement application and at the same time email notification shall also be sent to the employee for the confirmation of advance payment of sickness benefit. Employee is given seven (7) working days to confirm that the amount of sickness benefit was advanced by the employer. Failure to confirm within the given period or opted to click “I do not confirm” shall mean rejection of the filed SBRA by the employer.

For members, proceeds of the approved sickness benefit payment will be released through the member’s Unified Multi-purpose Identification (UMID) card enrolled as an ATM card or through their disbursement accounts in participating banks under the Philippine Electronic Fund Transfer System and Operations Network (PESONet). For employers, proceeds of the sickness reimbursements shall be credited to their enrolled disbursement bank account enrolled in DAEM.

“We want to remind the employers that under Republic Act 11199 or the Social Security Act of 2018, they should pay in advance the approved sickness benefit of their employees which is one of their primary obligations,” Ignacio concluded.

From January to November 2021, SSS has released around P3.30 billion to 399,455 members who availed of the said benefit.

For more information, visit the uSSSap Tayo Portal at, follow the SSS on Facebook at “Philippine Social Security System - SSS,” Instagram and YouTube at “mysssph,” Twitter at “PHLSSS,” or join its Viber Community at “MYSSSPH Updates.”

What is life like in Transnistria, the last Soviet stronghold in Europe?

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Transnistria is an unrecognised, separatist state on the territory of Moldova. Its independence is recognised only by Abkhazia, the Republic of Artsakh and South Ossetia, so regions that have limited recognition themselves.

In Transnistria, the majority of people speak Russian as opposed to Moldovan and the region has its own currency, the Transnistrian ruble. The republic also issues its own Transnistrian passports to its citizens but as Vlad, a man who was born and raised there, told me, people who live have dual citizenship of Transnistria and Moldova.

To reach Transnistria, it is necessary to go through a border crossing where foreigners are issued short-term visas. The validity of the visa depends on how much time one wants to spend there.

What makes Transnistria unique is the fact that, to this day, the republic is a Soviet stronghold and it seems like not much has changed there since the USSR fell. For example, hammer and sickle symbols can be observed everywhere, including on the republic’s official flag. Similarly, Lenin statues can be found at every corner.

Statue of Lenin in front of the building of the Transnistria Parliament

Statue of Lenin and the Transnistria Parliament in Tiraspol, the capital of Transnistria

The emblem of the USSR at the main square in Tiraspol

Streets of Tiraspol, Transnistria’s biggest city

The outskirts of Tiraspol

Rural Transnistria

Soviet stars on a gate to someone’s property

An abandoned Soviet school

Broken windows in the abandoned school

Soviet military training posters

Flag of Transnistria with hammer and sickle symbol

Transnistria is like no other place in Europe and when walking around Tiraspol and smaller cities one is under the impression that they went back in time to Soviet times.

Living in this state stuck in frozen-conflict, not recognised by any UN member is not easy as there are few jobs available and university degrees received in Transnistria are not recognised anywhere else.

That is why most young people go to the capital of Moldova or to Russia to study and then build their lives elsewhere. In turn, Transnistria, already abandoned by the international community, is also being left behind by its own people.

About the author:

Katarzyna Rybarczyk is a Political Correspondent for Immigration Advice Service, an immigration law firm operating globally and providing legal aid to forcibly displaced persons. Through her articles, she aims to raise awareness about security threats worldwide and the challenges facing communities living in low and middle-income countries.

Bongbong Marcos favors ABS-CBN's Boy Abunda over GMA's Jessica Soho?

Wazzup Pilipinas!?


Boy Abunda makes his TV comeback and goes face-to-face with five of the country's presidential aspirants to pick their minds in "The 2022 Presidential One-On-One Interviews with Boy Abunda," from January 24 to 28 on The Boy Abunda Talk Channel and Kapamilya Channel. 

After making waves because of BBM's refusal to join the interview by GMA's Jessica Soho, he now agrees to be interviewed by Boy Abunda from ABS-CBN!

Duterte Playbook is at PLAY!

Bongbong Marcos is preferring softball interviewers like Toni Gonzaga and Boy Abunda over experienced journalists like Jessica Soho. 

At this rate, maybe Lolit Solis and Cristy Fermin should invite him next. Pagkatapos kay Vice Ganda naman. Lol!

I can't help thinking about how the anti-ABS-CBN would take this? Their candidate decided to partake in a meeting with an organization that they hate in view of being "biased". 

Jessica Soho must be so offended that BBM declined her interview on the grounds of being biased while he granted one with Boy Abunda.

GMA is taking the hit for this, ratings-wise. I wonder what they’ll do now WITHOUT the presidential frontrunner participating in their programs?

I have nothing against Boy Abunda but he is a Talk Show host especially for celebrities. 

Jessica Soho already put her name in the world of journalism. Journalism is distribution of reports of facts

Filipinos should know what should they really look into for factual details.

Jessica Soho is a Peabody award-winning Journalist and the country’s Most Awarded News Presenter. Marcos Jr, the questions are tough because the job of the presidency is tough. This is not Toni Talks or Tonight with Boy Abunda interviews.

But definitely,  if I am a politician who is afraid of tough questions that will digged controversies, I will just go with the talk show host rather than a journalist who made me stutter.

However, Boy Abunda used to have a late Saturday night tv program where he used to interview different personalities including politicians on a wide range of issues. He's not just a showbiz talk show host after all.

Boy Abunda will also make a good job interviewing the presidentiables. He does his research, he is critical and he is bold even in digging unchartered truths. There I said it. Not comparing, but he has his own laurels. 

And there is nothing wrong if the journalist will ask questions about politicians controversies because it is also a way for you to explain your side based on your own facts. 

If BBM has issues then he should not be afraid to answer it to clear his name.

Though Jessica Soho is one of the country's most awarded journalist oozing with much credibility. It could have been an avenue for him to elaborate and clear his platforms and issues hounding his campaign. The weird thing is that Narcos Jr instead accepted to be interviewed by Boy Abunda.

Boy Abunda: BBM, my question to you is: when is it okay not to be okay and when is it not okay to be not okay?

Not dismissing Abunda's interviewing skills but Soho is far more superior than him. Plus the Abunda Interview will be shown on Boy's Youtube Channel and Kapamilya Channel which have limited audience. 

They agreed on being interviewed by Boy Abunda for ABS-CBN because obviously they have limited reach since they shutdown the network. It minimizes any fact checking that the public can consume since GMA has now the largest coverage especially those who doesn’t have internet.

Some may say, "Aattend naman siya sa interview ni Boy Abunda".

Even if we disregard the fact that Boy Abunda will likely be less aggressive, we need to acknowledge that his interview will only be shown online and on the Pay TV Kapamilya Channel (According to the YouTube description).

Remember how ABS-CBN's free-to-air license was not renewed?

Hindi lahat ng Pilipino may pang internet, let alone pangbayad para sa Kapamilya Channel (Again, hindi ito free-to-air). Paano sila?

But if Boy Abunda does not bring up the issue on ABS-CBN's franchise in this case, we're not buying it.

Interesting times here. BBM favors ABS CBN's Boy Abunda over GMA's Jessica Soho for the interview.   

People are rushing judgments already based on what they can see on the surface.

Boy Abunda and Jessica Soho…both are good interviewers. but for national agenda/topic, mas ok si Jessica. Sana yung kay Boy Abunda eh straight to the point questioning and avoid rhetoricals and “fast talks” questions.

This will make or break Boy Abunda's image.

I hope the Presidential interview with Boy Abunda will be fair. Kung gisahan ang style, gisahin lahat ng nakasalang. Also, please include Ka Leody as one of the interviewee. I hope it will be aired LIVE and not a prerecorded one.

I just can’t get the idea of Boy Abunda asking Marcos “sex or chocolates”  

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