GRNMA vs UPNMG - The Benefits and Policies

The Ghana Registered Nurses' and Midwives' Association (GRNMA) and Union of Professional Nurses and Midwives, Ghana (UPNMG) are labour unions every nurse or midwife in Ghana must choose from. An individual cannot join both associations at the same time so this write-up seeks to compare the benefits and policies of the two unions to help you make an informed choice.

To begin with, GRNMA had been the only labour association for nurses and midwives in Ghana for over 57 years until UPNMG was duly registered as a labour union in 2017.

So let’s talk about the deductions aspect then. This is the amount of money taken from your salary by the association you choose.

1.       Mutual Funds

Both associations deduct the same amount here and that is GH50.

2.      Association Dues

GRNMA deducts 2% of your salary while UPNMG deducts 1.5%.

3.      Building Levy

GRNMA deducts GH20 while UPNMG does not charge building fee.

Case scenario (Deductions)

Mr. Ali is a nursing officer who takes a Basic salary of GH₵ 2066.13, GRNMA takes 2% as association dues which translates to GH₵ 41.32, a Building levy of GH₵ 20.00, and Nurses fund union deduction = GH₵ 50.00. This amounts to a total of GH₵ 111.32. However,

Mr. Kwakye, a nursing officer takes a Basic salary of GH₵ 2066.13, UPNMG takes 1.5% of basic salary as dues which translates to GH₵ 30.99 and a Mutual fund of GH₵ 50.00. This amounts to GH₵ 80.99

NOTE: under the UPNMG deductions, there is no building levy, and the mutual fund is not a pension’s fund. Loans and other benefits will be derived from it and when a member retires, the said takes the contributed funds (minus any outstanding loan) plus interest.

I think this should give you a clear picture of deduction from both unions. Let’s talk about benefits or packages.

UPNMG Hire Purchases

UPNMG hire purchase is up and functioning and it's available for all members.

Shop is currently in Tamale. But we can make deliveries to other regions from our partner shops.

The CAGD and consent forms will however have to be filled and submitted by email or what's app to the secretariat before the item will be delivered.

Your affordability must be ascertained and be able to pay for the item you want to buy.

Items currently available include

Television, mobile phones, fridges, Washing machines, Kitchen equipment such as blenders, rice cookers... Etc.

Remember, no deposit, just pick and go.

GRNMA does not offer this package yet.

Land Schemes

GRNMA offers a land and housing scheme and here is the information found about it.

“If you go to Afari near the military hospital of the Abuakwa route, you will find this vast evidence there where the union has built houses on a vast land. Some of them are already occupied by their respective GRNMA members. Others too yet to hand over to the owner. Some to work just began.” Author Unknown

According to UPNMG, Their land scheme seeks to help members acquire affordable lands at locations of their choice at a flexible payment rate. We also have lands in some cities and towns we have dubbed UPNMG cities. These plots of land are for only UPNMG members and it is our hope that in a few years to come these lands will be covered with beautiful houses fully owned by Nurses and Midwives. The Housing scheme seeks to ease the burden of accommodation on members. It provides members with an opportunity to own houses in some selected parts of the country. Plans are advanced to help members start their own projects at locations of their choice as well.

Annual Souvenirs

GRNMA offers souvenirs where Procurement and distribution of souvenirs are free for all members every year.

UPNMG states: Members will be duly appreciated at the end of every year through the provision of Souvenirs such as calendars, diaries, Lacoste, union cloths etc.

Access to Loans

GRNMA offers soft loans and according to the information found, “GRNMA, will not ridicule the profession by asking u to come for common Iron with a pay slip. They also offer financial Support to Members in distress situations (Armed robbery, Fires, Accidents, etc.)

We are rather giving a loan scheme to every member at an unprecedented 10%per annum rate. This rate is the Cheapest & has never happened to the financial sector in Ghana’s history. (Expect these few weeks)”.

The UPNMG welfare fund is a mutual fund not a pension’s fund. Therefore members can have access to soft loans at very low interest rates or make partial withdrawals from their money after a period of contributing to it. Members contribute a minimum of GH₵ 50.00 and a maximum of GH₵ 500.00 per month. This is one of our flagship policies aimed at giving some financial freedom to Nurses and Midwives. The era of huge interest rates from banks and micro finance companies is over.

CPD Training

UPNMG states: To ensure that academic and practical knowledge of Nurses and Midwives are updated at all times, UPNMG is investing in Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses through partnering with institutions to help its members update their skills and knowledge. The union is also investing some funds into the training of its members.

GRNMA members would have to make use of only the CPD program offered by N&MC as GRNMA does not offer this package yet.  They however, fund yearly Best Nurse/Midwives Award (one member from each Region).

Employment of newly qualified Nurses and Midwives

UPNMG will invest in the building of hospitals and clinics which will enable us employ newly qualified Nurses and Midwives pending financial clearance by the Government. This will also reduce the burden on the government when it comes to the employment of Nurses and Midwives. We will also collaborate with government in developing a transparent system to export Nurses and Midwives to other countries to reduce the unemployment situation as well as serve as a source of foreign income for the country. We are also in talks with the current government to put measures in place to ensure that the private hospitals pay the right wages to their staff to encourage more people to work with them.

GRNMA does not offer this package at the moment.

Hostels

GRNMA Members use their hostel facilities with 50% price waived off. Other benefits include free breakfast, Wi-Fi, fridge, digital TV, air-conditioning, etc.

UPNMG does not offer this package yet as they do not own hostels.

Entrepreneurship Training

UPNMG states: To ensure financial freedom for Nurses and Midwives, UPNMG will organize entrepreneurship trainings for Nurses and Midwives to better equip them as well as provide flexible loans to help them set up their own businesses. Nurses and Midwives have great ideas and we belief if these business ideas are polished well, we can have members running their own businesses, employing people and gaining extra income to improve their economic status.

Health Fund

According to sources, GRNMA Health Fund seeks to address the health needs (cost) of ailments that fall outside the remit of Health insurance for members.

UPNMG states: In addition to the insurance cover for members, there is a health fund set up to take care of members health needs whenever in need. This fund is set aside to cater for members who sustain injuries through accidents or acquire illnesses while performing their duties as Nurses or Midwives. As the fund grows, we shall review its utilization to include high cost health care services such as dialysis and organ transplants.

Scholarship Scheme and Research Grants

UPNMG Members who express interest to further their studies and are qualified will be considered for scholarships after a committee set up to consider their application deems them qualified. Research grant is also available for those who want to carry out research works related to nursing, midwifery and health. A panel made up of seasoned researchers and academicians have also been constituted to look at good research works as will be presented by members for publication in our upcoming magazines.

GRNMA does not offer this package yet.

Auto/Car scheme

GRNMA has had extensive discussions with transport /Auto firm. They are going to supply ONLY GRNMA members with saloon vehicles at a very extremely affordable rate where the union will pay upfront for the individual members for them to make installment payment at flexible modules.

UPNMG states: With the auto scheme, the UPNMG is in talks with car dealers and some financial institutions that will be willing to sell cars to our members on installment. The union will be your guarantor. Also we would re-engage government on the vehicle tax waver for nurses and Midwives

Legal Intervention

GRNMA pays Salaries of the Association’s lawyer(s) to fight for members in legal suits in the course of professional practice. This is a nice offer since nursing is risky.

UPNMG owns a lawyer on retainer basis who is paid to handle our legal issues for us.

Note: We could not attain details of GRNMA packages since their website was down during the time of this write-up.

Neither could I obtain them from their telegram group since my account was banned about an hour after I joined. 

UPNMG packages was however sourced from their telegram group. You can visit GRNMA or UPNMG websites for more details.

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