Protest over rejection of our initiative

We express strong protest regarding the decision of the Committee on Health, Labor and Social Welfare to reject our initiative for organizing a consultative hearing on public procurement in the health sector. Its incomprehensible that Committee which has health care in its jurisdiction was not interested to learn more about the problems in the public procurement sector, because its functionality is a precondition for the functioning of the health system as well.We ask DPS’ MP’s, who voted against the motion (Zoran Jelić, Halil Duković, Zorica Kovačević and Zoran Srzentić) to explain the reasons for voting against the initiative to the public, citizens and especially to patients.

There was nothing more natural than for the Committee to initiate a debate on this important issue in existing situation.

We thank the MP Janko Vučinić from DF who formally proposed the initiative, as well as to MPs: Neven Gošović and Andrija Popovic, who voted for the initiative.

We regret because of the absence of the opposition members (Novica Stanić, Radovan Asanović) and an MP from SDP (Izet Bralić).

We expect from the Committee on Economics, Finance and Budget, to put this issue on the next session’s agenda and return public trust in the Parliament.

We would like to remind the public that we sought conducting of a joint consultation hearing of responsible actors in the field of public procurement of medicines, medical devices and equipment, by the Committee on Economy, Finance and Budget along with Committee on Health, Labor and Social Welfare, in order to find the best legal solutions and practices to prevent the continuation and repetition of the current public procurement crisis in this sector.

Public procurement in the health sector over the last and current year were marked with numerous problems.

The case of insulin supply as well as the procurement of medicines and other medical supplies in the past year, which are accompanied by non-compliance with statutory deadlines for appeal, canceling the tender, and several months long procedure that caused the shortage of drugs, cutting a decision of the State Commission for Supervision of Public Procurement, pointed the need for more precise legal regulation and better functioning of institutions in the public procurement system.

The importance of this issue is emphasized by the fact that in for public procurement in the health sector is being spent about fifty million and that the ultimate beneficiaries of these goods (drugs) are patients. We are bound, as a society and the state to provide them with the minimum requirements for treatment during the year. We owe it to prevent people in need to be victims of the law, incompetence, corruption and bureaucracy. It is necessary to prevent repeating of the shortage of medicines in 2014.

The Parliament of Montenegro must contribute to the solution of the current public procurement crisis in the health sector (purchase of medicines, medical supplies and equipment). Joint work and activities of the Committee on Economy, Finance and Budget, Committee on Health, Labor and Social Welfare (as committees in charge for procurement and health care) should be able to find a proper solution for overcoming the problems in this area.

Stevo Muk
President of the Managing Board

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