Duterte defends DOH on ‘overpriced’ medical supplies, PPEs
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday night stood by the Department of Health (DOH) as he defended the government’s purchase of the alleged “overpriced” medical supplies and personal protective equipment (PPEs).
In a late-night public address, Duterte bared it was him who order Health Secretary Francisco Duque III to speed up the procurement of the needed medical supplies even if it cost the government.
“I gave him the instruction and I admit it in public now,” Duterte said.
“Sabi ko sa kanya (I told him), ‘do everything you can’. Sabi niya, ‘there’s so many propositions’. ‘I do not care. If it’s not cheap, if it is expensive, go – just go ahead and do something about it kasi ipit na tayo dito’ (we’re in a tight situation),” he added.
During the recent Senate committee hearing, Senator Panfilo Lacson sought an explanation from the DOH why the government procured costly laboratory equipment that could be bought by the private sector at a much lower price.
Senate minority leader Franklin Drilon also questioned the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) over its overpriced COVID-19 test package rates.
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