Benefits on the fringe

Providing employees voluntary benefits is a cheap way to expand packages, but some HR practitioners are wary they are endorsing services and could be held accountable
By Todd Humber
|CHRR, Guide to Pensions & Benefits|Last Updated: 06/04/2003

G

ypsy is one relaxed feline. Long the most-pampered member of the household, the 18-year-old cat now rests even easier knowing she has health-care coverage.

That’s because her owner, Ramona Lewis, the HR manager for Novartis Animal Health Canada Inc., a Mississauga, Ont.-based manufacturer of medication for animals, has signed up for a discounted pet health insurance plan provided by an outside company that is available to employees at Novartis.