Angara aired his concern over the continuing problem of the DOH with the overstocking of drugs and medicine with so many Filipinos struggling to find ways to gain access to medicine due to lack of funds.
Geremy Pintolo
Probe sought on DOH’s expiring medicine
Cecille Suerte Felipe (The Philippine Star) - August 2, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Sonny Angara yesterday said he wants an inquiry into the overstocking of close to P20 billion worth of medicine by the Department of Health (DOH) in its warehouses, as reported by the Commission on Audit (COA).

Angara aired his concern over the continuing problem of the DOH with the overstocking of drugs and medicine with so many Filipinos struggling to find ways to gain access to medicine due to lack of funds.

He said the DOH’s “perennial problem with undistributed expired drugs” will also be a “major point of interest” in the upcoming Senate hearings on the proposed 2020 budget of the agency.

In its annual audit report on the DOH for 2018, the COA noted that over P18 billion worth of drugs and medicine were stocked inside its warehouses, a significant portion of which were approaching their expiry dates.

The COA also found that over P30 million worth of drugs and medicine distributed to various centers for health development, treatment for rehabilitation centers and hospitals were already expired.

Angara, chairman of the Senate committee on finance, said the health department’s wastage of hundreds of millions worth of medicines “is becoming like dengue, it has become an annual thing.”

“And to think, many Filipinos for lack of money can’t buy medicine or are under-medicating themselves. And then they read reports about drugs in some government warehouses going to waste,” Angara added.

Angara said DOH officials who will appear before his panel “should be ready with a plan on how to end this problem.”

“They should prepare prescriptions. Diagnose the problem and come up with solutions. If the drug distribution system is constipated, then what is the laxative?” he said. 

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH SONNY ANGARA
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