Drug shortage blamed on procurement system

By Mike Puia

Permanent Secretary of MHMS, Dr Tenneth Dalipanda

PERMANENT Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS), Dr Tenneth Dalipanda, says the drug shortage issue experienced in the country was due to the procurement system.

Dalipanda said it has nothing to do with funding.

Speaking at a press conference called by the Prime Minister, Rick Hou, yesterday, Dapipanda said the current shortage was due to delay in the procurement process for drugs for 2018.

He said the process to procure drugs for this year started in mid-2017.

Dalipanda said the process took long before final orders were awarded to the supplier in April.

He said procurement of drugs is not as easy as one thinks as drug supplier would produce drugs that are not available.

Dalipanda the issue has nothing to do with funds as the Ministry has $50 million for the procurement of drugs.

He said they had only used only less than $20 million.

To avoid this issue from happening again, Dr. Dalipanda said their Ministry has commenced drugs procurement last month.

The order that has been made is anticipated to be awarded around September this year and the drugs should be delivered in the country next April.

This paper understands the procurement system has now come under the supervision of the MHMS’s head quarter.

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