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Health officials in Tra Vinh, Long An arrested in Viet A test kit case

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – Four incumbent and former officials of the Department of Health and Center for Disease Control (CDC) of the Mekong Delta province of Tra Vinh and director of the General Hospital of Vinh Long Province have been detained for their alleged involvement in the Viet A case.

The four comprised deputy director of the Tra Vinh Department of Health Tran Dac Thanh, former director of the provincial CDC Nguyen Van Lo, deputy head of the CDC’s division of Testing-Image Analysis Le Van Thanh and Nguyen Van Truyen, a specialist of the provincial Department of Health’s pharmaceutical profession division, the local media reported.

They were charged with violating bidding regulations, causing serious consequences.

According to the initial investigation results, from 2021 to 2022, they conducted eight packages worth over VND36 billion to buy medical equipment and supplies and Covid test kits from the Viet A Technology Corporation.

Viet A signed contracts for five packages with the Tra Vinh Department of Health and three packages with the provincial CDC.

During the execution of the eight packages, the four regularized bidding procedures, causing losses of some VND7.6 billion for the State, including VND6.9 billion at the Department of Health and VND700 million at the CDC.

As for the director of the General Hospital of Vinh Long Province, Doan Van Hung, he was involved in six packages to procure medical equipment and test kits from Viet A.

Besides Hung, Dinh Thi Thanh Chi, acting head of the hospital’s pharmaceuticals division; and Phan Thi Ngoc Tham, chief technician of the hospital, were also detained.

The provincial inspector had earlier stated that last year, the hospital spent nearly VND74 billion buying medical supplies, chemicals and protective equipment for the fight against Covid-19 and had paid over VND68 billion.

The inspectors had found that the quotations of up to 34 of the 35 packages were copies and each of the 53 sale contracts were executed two to 38 days late, compared with their validity.

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