THE Department of Health is working with the Department of Trade and Industry, industry associations, and private firms to locally manufacture personal protective equipment (PPEs), Health OIC-Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said.
Vergeire said the DOH has tapped the Confederation of Wearable Exporters of the Philippines (CONWEP), a group of Philippine-based firms exporting garments for top global brands, to start the local production of 10,000 PPE coveralls daily.
The DOH and the Philippine General Hospital approved the design prototype for the PPEs, while CONWEP has secured a supplier for the raw materials, such as face hoodies and elastic bands that are certified to have met international standards for waterproofing and resistance to contaminants. This is to ensure that the PPEs produced will be of “medical grade” and meet prescribed specifications for appropriate safety and protection.
Vergeire explained that CONWEP is able to import PPE parts that have fabric import certificates from an international accreditation firm. With CONWEP, the DOH expects that the country will be better equipped to meet increased local demand for PPEs and more effectively protect health care workers and other frontliners.
“Given the global shortage of medical supplies and equipment, we are glad that many sectors in the country are coming together to provide urgent PPEs to our frontline health workers in our fight against COVID-19,” she said, adding that the raw materials are scheduled to arrive on April 9 and production will begin shortly after Holy Week.
Meanwhile, the Department is anticipating the completion of the delivery and distribution efforts of the PPEs procured through the Procurement Service - Department of Budget and Management this week.