KUALA LUIMPUR, April 7 – The purchase of 92 disposable medical supplies (BPPB) at the Tuanku Mizan Armed Forces Hospital, here does not comply with the financial procedures stipulated. The Auditor-General’s Report 2013, Series 1, tabled at the Dewan Rakyat Monday found that the delivery of the BPPB via 92 delivery notes was done directly by the suppliers to the Surgery Department without involving the Medical Stores as stipulated. “The acceptance of the equipment had been signed by the Superintending Officer and other officers at the Operation Room. An audit check revealed that there was no evidence that the officers concerned were empowered to receive the equipment and sign the delivery document.
“As the purchasing process did not follow the procedures stipulated, the Audit (department) finds that the delivery note submitted by the supplier did not have the government order number. “According to the explanation given by the officer concerned at the hospital, the request was made through a telephone call because of the pressing need. The absence of the order number made it difficult to check the payment by the Budget Unit,” the report said. As such, the Audit Department could not ensure whether the supply had been delivered and in fact, the cost involved and the location of the store for the equipment could not be checked.
In addition, the Audit department found that the equipment purchased had yet to be used or had not been used optimally and that there were disposable medical equipment which had exceeded their expiry period and would expire in June 2014. It also found that the Medical Ward at the Tuanku Mizan Armed Forces Hospital involving the Burn Ward and Nuclear Biological and Chemical and Female Multi Dental, Opthalmology wards had not begun operations although the hospital had begun its services in 2009. “The wards which are not operational resulted in the equipment such as beds, mattresses and Central Monitoring System to monitor the patients not being utilised,” the report said.
The Audit department also found that the equipment placed at the nurses’ area were spoilt. The report also said that the acceptance of the medical equipment at the Tuanku Mizan Armed Forces Hospital and the Kota Kinabalu Region Armed Forces Hospital had not been properly managed. The Audit check revealed that no space was provided in the Purchasing Application Form to indicate the balance of the current stock in the store. The audit department felt that every purchase and acceptance of the BPPB had been carried out accordng to financial procedures from internal control which was enforced to avoid any surplus stock and wastage due to expiry of stocks. The Defence Ministry in its feedback on item 92 of the delivery note on Feb 14, 2014 stated that the staff at the Surgical Department were no longer allowed to accept any supply directly from the suppliers without involving the officer from the Medical Store.
The ministry pointed out that since the Sultan Mizan Armed Forces Hospital was set up, it did not have a Purchasing Unit that was dedicated and focused on the management of all aspects of purchasing equipment and supplies. This was because the existing establishments based on approval from the Public Service Department were limited and did not follow the establishment norms of the Health Ministry. On the Medical Wards at the Tuanku Mizan Armed Forces Hospital which were yet to be operational, the ministry had stated on Dec 31, 2013 that it accepted that the equipment mentioned had not been used because of the limited establishments approved by the Central Agency. On the surplus stocks and wastage of medical supplies to the extent that the stocks had exceeded the expiry period, the ministry said that the medicines that had exceeded the expiry period had been returned to the Pharmacy Department for the purpose of disposal.