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On March 9, 2020, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered a state of public health emergency following a confirmed local transmission of COVID-19 in the country.

As of writing, the archipelago is placed under a state of calamity.

Furthermore, an ‘enhanced community quarantine’ is imposed in the island of Luzon. This requires people to stay at home, suspends transport operations, regulates provision of food and essential health services, and observes a heightened presence of uniformed personnel for reinforcement.

In support of the government’s efforts to contain the virus and slow its spread, the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM)—by virtue of Government Procurement Policy Board’s (GPPB) resolution No. 03-2020—updates the list of Common-Use Supplies and Equipment (CSEs) for procurement to include some medical items.

Such items consist of alcohol, sanitizers, tissue, thermometers, hand soap, detergent, cleaning materials, personal protective equipment for utility staff, gloves, masks, common medicines, and testing kits, among others—the procurement of which will be made under the revised provisions on Negotiated Procurement (Emergency Cases) modality.

Screenshot from the GPPB Resolution 03-2020 PDF file

GPPB says this provision may be resorted to under certain instances, such as in case of ‘imminent danger to life or property during a state of calamity.’

The list of ‘urgently required’ items to address the current COVID-19 situation was submitted by the Department of Health for its prompt mobilization. The GPPB confirmed and approved the request in adoption of a more efficient, effective, and expedient procurement procedures during a state of public health emergency.

The confirmation and approval of GPPB are constitutionally supported by Item 3 of the Letter of Instruction No. 755 that authorizes PS to include supplies, materials, and such other items in the list of CSEs.

The resolution is further strengthened by Section 7 of Republic Act No. 11332 of the Philippine Constitution, which authorizes the President to mobilize governmental agencies to respond to a health threat of national and/or international concern.

Internet photo | Pixabay

The World Health Organization has already declared the COVID-19 as a pandemic; defined as the ‘worldwide spread’ of a new disease.

With the increasing cases of COVID-19, the PS-DBM reiterates its commitment to be of service to the Filipino people by providing smart—and healthy—procurement solutions.

For more information on this GPPB resolution and list of medical items, click here.

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