P143M in NKTI drugs, lab supplies missing, says COA

MANILA, Philippines – A 2016 audit report on the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI) found that as of December 31, 2016, some P146.94 million in supplies listed in the hospital's books are unaccounted for, the Commission on Audit (COA) reported recently.

A physical inventory of the central warehouse and the end-users' stockroom turned up items worth P151.049 million, out of a total of P297.99 million, according to the report publicized Thursday, April 6.

COA said that, of the amount unaccounted for, "97.56% or P143.349 million pertains to pharmaceutical drugs, medical, surgical, and laboratory supplies. We noted that no subsidiary ledger was maintained to keep track of accountabilities for these inventories, thus making difficult and tedious the ongoing reconciliation process."

Several weaknesses were also exposed in NKTI's system for accounting of its supplies. These include a lack of checks and balances, haphazard record keeping, and a circuitous documentation of inventory items from one section to another. 

Auditors explained: “Nobody checks whether the quantity of stored supplies match the quantity of supplies indicated in the RIS (requisition and issue slip). Since one and the same person maintains the stock card, there is a risk that the quantity of issued supplies in the RIS could be padded to conceal inventory shortage."

While the NKTI uses a computerized system – the Medsys Inventory System (MIS) – which stores data into electronic supply ledger cards being maintained for each item of inventory, auditors were not provided a copy of the Inspection and Acceptance Report (IAR). It would have had information on the inventory received by the NKTI Material Management and Inventory Division (MMID).

The issuance of inventory supplies from the MMID central warehouse also did not give a breakdown of inventory issued and received by the storekeepers.

COA auditors also found out rejected inventory items were returned to suppliers without proper documentation, and thus did not show in the computerized inventory. This resulted in hospital management being unable to file timely claims for replacement or refunding of rejected deliveries and liquidated damages from the hospital's suppliers.

COA recommended the NKTI undertake steps to correct the deficiencies, including: