Health workers’ group hits DOH over P7.4 B expired, unused meds
MANILA, Philippines — A health workers’ group on Tuesday said that the Department of Health (DOH) must be held accountable for the P7.4 billion worth of wasted medicine that was reported by the Commission on Audit (COA).
“This is too much and we condemn this kind of irresponsible act, clearly a total negligence on the part of DOH, to think that this is not the first time that the COA released its findings on expired and undistributed drugs and medicines from the DOH. In fact, almost every year, there are findings like this,” Alliance of Health Workers president Robert Mendoza, said.
A COA report released on September 6 showed that the medicines were classified as ““expired and/or near-expiry, damaged, overstocked, excessive, understocked, slow-moving, undistributed, distributed late and/or accepted below 18 months.”
The report also stated that there were more than two million expired vials of Covid-19 vaccines.
Mendoza added that the 2024 budget must be directly allocated for the maintenance and other expenses of 69 hospitals affiliated to the DOH to prevent the wastage of medicine from happening again.
“We stand firm that the budget for the year 2024 for Purchase and Allocation of Drugs, Medicines and Vaccines amounting to P27.907 billion must be directly allocated to the Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses of the 69 DOH hospitals, so as not to lead to misuse and corruption of people’s money and the people themselves can avail the free medicines in public hospitals,” Mendoza said.