Lacson doubts DOH purchase of 'overpriced' ambulances went through formal bidding

Published September 6, 2021, 10:19 AM

by Mario Casayuran

Senator Panfilo M. Lacson on Monday, September 6, brushed off a defense of the Department of Health (DOH) that its purchase of ambulances valued at P2.5 million per unit went through the agency’s Bids and Awards Committee.

Senator Panfilo Lacson (Czar Dancel/MANILA BULLETIN File Photo)

The DOH also said that these ambulances contained complete packages consisting of automated external defibrillator, portable suction machine and oxygen cylinder.

Lacson said he would present in tomorrow’s public hearing by the Senate Blue Ribbon committee pieces of evidence that the ambulances bought by the DOH were overpriced by as much as P1 million per unit.

Most of the ambulances were distributed in the Calabarzon area.

Lacson said he would show that the specifications and looks of the DOH-purchased ambulances were almost the same as those purchased by local government units (LGUs) that cost P1.5 million to P1.6 million each.

He also said the LGU ambulances had complete added equipment bought at lower prices.

Lacson pointed out that there are many questions that the Senate would ask the DOH particularly on COVID-19 funds and regular health-related programs.

Before exposing the alleged overpriced ambulances, Lacson also revealed a Commission on Audit (COA) findings that there are P2.7-billion worth of unused or expired medicines under the care of the DOH.