DOH drops PS-DBM as procurement agency for COVID-19 supplies in 2022

Published September 2, 2021, 1:51 PM

by Noreen Jazul

The Department of Health (DoH) has vowed to no longer transfer funds to the Procurement Service-Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM) for the purchase of COVID-19 supplies.


During the Committee on Appropriations briefing on the DOH’s 2022 proposed budget, House Deputy Speaker Rufus Rodriguez told the agency that it should handle the procurement of pandemic response supplies like face masks, face shields, and personal protective equipment (PPEs).

“The COA (Commission on Audit) flagged you P67 billion, and P42 billion of that was to the PS-DBM, PITC (Philippine International Trading Corporation), and LGUs (local government units)…Look at what happened in 2020. A lot of question on the procurement by the PS-DBM of the mask, face shield, PPEs,” Rodriguez told DOH.

The solon also asked the DOH to commit that it will not give a “single centavo” from its P19.68 billion proposed allocation for the COVID-19 response under its 2022 national expenditure program (NEP) to the PS-DBM.

DOH Secretary Franciscoq Duque III, for his part, said: “Yes. We will do that.”

“The situation…has changed in a sense that we can now do the bids and awards. We have our own committee…and we will be able to maximize this capacity although it’s still limited,” Duque said.

According to COA’s 2020 audit report, the PS-DBM purchased around 113 million face masks worth P27.72 each and around 1.3 million face shields for P120 per piece around April to May 2020.

The DOH is proposing a P242.22 billion budget for the year 2022, which is 14 percent higher than its previous budget of P212 billion.