The Department of Health (DOH) is investigating reports that Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corporation had tampered with the manufacturing dates of face shields it sold to the government.
In a statement, the DOH said it was conducting a comprehensive review of procurement transactions which includes inspection of incoming or currently housed stocks of personal protective equipment (PPE) procured from Pharmally, either directly or indirectly, through the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM).
During the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee hearing, Pharmally executive Krizle Grace Mago testified that they tampered with the expiration dates of the face shields delivered to the DOH.
Mago said it was Pharmally Corporate Treasurer and Secretary Mohit Dargani who had instructed her to tamper with the dates.
Pharmally won the bidding for the face shield contract with the DOH, a separate procurement from PS-DBM, the Health Department said.
The procurement of the face shields was done through a March 2021 competitive bidding process in which eight prospective bidders submitted their prices for the face shields.
The DOH said that Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corporation had delivered over 500,000 face shields.
However, the Health Department has not yet pay Pharmally since it has yet to complete the deliveries of the procured face shields.
“We are fast-tracking our investigation on the face shields delivered to the DOH and if those are the ones being referred to in the Senate hearing,” said Atty. Charade Mercado-Grande, Undersecretary of the Health Regulation Team.
“If the face shields are proven to be tampered with, we would definitely take necessary legal remedies. The DOH assures that prior to sending out any procured items for use by our healthcare workers, these are duly inspected. Likewise, health facilities have to inspect, count, and verify the items they received from the DOH.”
The DOH added that it would further implement stringent measures of inspection during delivery to ensure procured supplies are not damaged nor have exceeded their shelf life.
The DOH also underscored that it did not tolerate tampering with any procured supplies.
“The DOH has decided to suspend acceptance and further deliveries of face shields from Pharmally, pending the conclusion of the investigations in the Department. We are aware of the statements made by Pharmally employees about the tampering of the production date on the certificate. Out of prudence and caution, the DOH has decided to suspend the succeeding deliveries to protect the interest and safety of our healthcare workers,” Mercado-Grande said. — DVM, GMA News
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