BENGALURU: Bangalore Apartment Federation (BAF), which has around 500 apartment complexes as its members, has decided to roll out a medical insurance scheme for domestic helpers.
BAF will launch ‘Medical aid for domestic help under residential apartment’ (Madhura) on Sunday. Maids, cooks, drivers, electricians, plumbers, gardeners and others who work in apartments can benefit from it.
“Most domestic workers do not get coverage under government schemes like Ayushman Bharat or Arogya Karnataka as they could be above the poverty line or don’t fall under the eligible households category, as defined under the National Food Security Act. Hence, there is a need to get their health insurance covered through alternative mechanisms,” said BAF president HA Nagaraj Rao.
Benefits like ESI or group insurance are not available for domestic workers, making their lives miserable during medical emergencies, said vice-president K Arun Kumar.
How group insurance works
Domestic helps normally work in more than one household. Employers together pay about 80% of the insurance fee and the domestic help pays the rest. The money raised by group insurance will support the domestic help’s family, which includes spouse and children.
The insurance will ensure domestic workers get medical support at hospitals across India. “There are instances when the domestic worker on leave visits his/her hometown and falls ill. In such cases, medical support is allowed in their respective states,” said BAF general secretary Srikanth Narasimhan.
Prathima Anand, president of Chitrakut Mahal Apartment said, “It is a good idea as it will support domestic helps if something untoward happens at work.”