Government issued tender to buy medical equipment itself, despite VGH concession

Sale of hospitals from Vitals to Steward had already been announced when government planned to buy equipment for the Gozo Hospital, despite 30 year concession to private sector

The issuance of a government tender to purchase medical equipment for the Gozo hospital, despite a 30 year concession to the private sector, had been described as
The issuance of a government tender to purchase medical equipment for the Gozo hospital, despite a 30 year concession to the private sector, had been described as "very strange" by an PPPs expert

The government had issued a tender for the purpose of purchasing medical equipment itself for the Gozo hospital, despite having a concession sale agreement with Vitals Global Healthcare, who were charged with investing in the hospital.

Illum reports that at a time when Vitals’ intention to sell its 30 year concession - through which it was given the responsibility by the government to invest in the Gozo, St Luke’s and Karin Grech hospitals  - to Steward Health Care was already made public, the government had been planning on forking out money from its own budget to buy necessary equipment for Gozo General Hospital.

An expert on public-private partnerships told the newspaper that the tender, which was issued on 30 January this year, on the same day the Medical Association of Malta had announced industrial action in connection with the concession sale, was “very strange”.

The expert also said such a tender “made no sense”, and went against the whole point of having a PPP if the government would still be making investments itself.

The tender, which closes on 6 March 2018, is for a four year period and can be extended by six months. Through it, the government is committing itself to purchasing up to a maximum of €807,000 in laparoscopy/thoracoscopy equipment.

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