The Department of Health on Saturday assured the public that no defective face shields were distributed to health workers following the admission of an officer of Pharmally Pharmaceuticals Corp. that they tampered with the expiration dates of the face shields sold by the firm to the government.
“As fas as the DOH is concerned, whatever we were able to deliver to all of our healthcare workers were all in good condition,” she said in a press briefing.
“We do not accept face shields that are defective or face shields that have discolorations. We do inspections,” Vergeire added.
The Health official confirmed that face shields have a shelf life, and that some parts can deteriorate over time.
“Just like any other medical commodity, it has what we call a shelf life. The face shields that we procure, this is not for the community.
This is medical grade and this is used by our medical workers,” she said.
On Friday, Pharmally official Krizle Grace Mago admitted that she ordered the tampering of the face shield certificates based on the instruction given to her by Pharmally corporate treasurer and secretary Mohit Dargani.
Dargani, for his part, denied the allegation.
“Mago is used to receiving instructions from me, but in this case, it was not the case,” he said.
Asked by Senator Francis Pangilinan if she thinks they were swindling the government, Mago said, “I believe so, Mr. Chairman.”
This emerged as Pharmally bagged more than one-fourth of some P42 billion in contracts with the Department of Budget Procurement Service (PS-DBM) for medical supplies to address the COVID-19 pandemic, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said.
Lacson cited DBM documents indicating that of 45 suppliers, Pharmally grabbed 26.39 percent of the P42 billion transferred by the Department of Health to the PS-DBM.
“Out of 44 other suppliers, Pharmally is No. 1, and you bagged 26.39 percent of the P42 billion transferred by DOH to the PS-DBM even with a P625,000 initial capitalization,” Lacson told Pharmally Director Linconn Ong at the Senate hearing on the matter.
“We’d like to find out from PS-DBM. Is this the culture in PS-DBM to award the bulk of contracts to Pharmally? Is this unusual or is this very special?” he asked.