CDRRMO refutes allegations of ‘overpriced’ mobile clinic PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 03 May 2016 13:37

By SHEILA COVARRUBIAS

Apolinario on Monday presented to the media a very comprehensive report to disprove allegations of overpricing of a mobile medical clinic that the agency is purchasing for DRRM operations.

Apolinario said the issue has been blown out of proportion, his office and his person ridiculed and maligned due to unsubstantiated accusations.

The subject mobile medical clinic priced at P37.9 million is a custom-built unit and not a standard class equipment that some members of the City Council said cost only a little over P16 million, he said.

The unit is manufactured by the La Boit Specialty Vehicles, Inc. based in Gahanna, Ohio, USA to be supplied to the City Government of Zamboanga by BBLM Enterprises, Inc. of Shellby Twp, Michigan, USA through its marketing partner in the Philippines, XJJ Industries, Inc. based in Parañaque City.

In his presentation, Apolinario illustrated the differences in the specifications of the P37.9M customized mobile clinic and the P16M standard class unit ranging from the chassis model, engine, transmission, axle, tires, equipment, sidewalls and roof, flooring among others.

He agreed that a check with the La Boit website would tell anyone that a well-equipped unit can range from $175,000-$350,000 depending on options and features added. However, he said the website also emphasizes that the manufacturer, customizes units to fit exactly the type of service that the end user plans to offer.

Based on the CDRRMO’s purchase request, the mobile medical clinic is a 35-footer van, with chassis model of a 4x4 truck with GVWR of 29,000 pounds. Engine is diesel with electro-hydraulic fuel system, automatic transmission and other specifications customized to fit the city’s needs. The standard class equipment is likewise a 35 footer van with chassis model of a 4x2 truck with GVWR 26,000 pounds. Engine is gas, transmission model is Allison 1000 5-speed for GVW up to 19,500 pounds (class A chassis) and for GVW up to 26,000 pounds (class c chassis). Apolinario cited numerous other differences in the specifications indicating the CDRRMO-requested unit will suit the office’s needs and “will not only accommodate multiple casualties and provide advanced life support in saving lives in times of disasters, but will also be convertible into a mobile command center.”

The mobile unit is a commercially built unit which could address patient needs and is conducive to medical responders using it. Its capabilities as a mobile medical clinic include MCI ambulance, mobile intensive care unit, surgical (public health),first aid station and digital imaging; disaster relief operations and command center/incident command post.

The CDRRMO chief reiterated that what City Hall is requesting from the City Council is the authority for the mayor to open a letter of credit for the payment of the unit and not an authority to purchase the equipment.

The purchase has undergone the required procedures and was done within the bounds of law, he added. — Sheila Covarrubias