Thailand’s National Health Security Office (NHSO) has proposed a rewriting of the terms of reference and specifications for antigen test kits (ATKs) to be procured by the government, following Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s instructions that the products must be endorsed by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The NHSO’s head of a working committee on public health expenses, under the universal healthcare scheme, Kriangsak Watcharanukulkiat, said the Government Pharmaceutical Organization (GPO), which conducted the bidding for the ATKs, can terminate the terms of reference (ToR) used in the recent bidding and start a new selection process, which complies with Prime Minister’s instructions.
He said the GPO can call for a new round of bidding using the specifications drawn up by his committee or can ask the panel to draw up new ToR for the procurement.
Dr. Kriangsak said, if the GPO opts to use the “specific purchase” method, the procurement scheme will not be delayed, adding that, under the specifications drawn up by the NHSO, two ATK brands meet the qualifications and have been approved by WHO. (NNT)