DOH acts on meds distribution, overstocking issues

MANILA – The Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday said it is taking necessary actions in response to the Commission on Audit’s (COA) 2018 report on the PHP295.767 million worth of expiring medicines and medical supplies.

In a statement, the DOH clarified it has been distributing near expiry drugs and medicines since January 2019.

“To date, all stocks of filariasis kits, CD4 cartridge kits, Tuberculin PPD, and Japanese encephalitis vaccines have already been distributed,” the DOH said.

It reported that 133,500 remaining metformin units will be distributed to local government units (LGUs), Centers for Health and Development, and DOH hospitals for patients’ use in the outpatient departments until the end of July 2019.

“As for the remaining 84,100,140 units of micronutrient powder sachets will be distributed to DOH hospitals for pediatric patients, non-government organizations, orphanages, and miners positive for mercury, and supplementary feeding program and reception and study centers for children,” it added.

Following the recommendations of COA in the 2018 report, the DOH said that its concerned teams “have been relentlessly collaborating to resolve the issues on overstocking, distribution and warehousing, and funds have been allocated for the payment of rental of warehouses and hauling of commodities to facilitate immediate distribution”.

The DOH also said it has implemented organizational changes to ensure that dedicated units for logistics monitoring and management, and procurement monitoring and management are in place.

“To expedite the distribution of health commodities, the DOH has hired additional manpower to assist health facilities and regional offices; tapped several Development Partners such as USAID, United Nations Population Fund, Philippine Business for Social Progress, among others, for assistance in improving DOH delivery system and processes; and intensified coordination with national government agencies and LGUs to supplement the provision of health commodities to targeted beneficiaries,” it added.  Ma. Teresa Montemayor / PNA –