Another overpriced hospital device

THE SCANDAL involving the purchase of an overpriced CT scanner by Piešťany Hospital could have a competitor that even surpasses the original, according to Christian Democratic Movement (KDH) representatives, the TASR newswire reported on November 10.

THE SCANDAL involving the purchase of an overpriced CT scanner by Piešťany Hospital could have a competitor that even surpasses the original, according to Christian Democratic Movement (KDH) representatives, the TASR newswire reported on November 10.

In August, with the assistance of European funds, the Medical Faculty of Pavol Jozef Šafárik University (UPJŠ) in Košice bought a magnetic resonance device for a price that was one third higher than what Czech Masaryk University in Brno paid for a similar device with higher r.

The magnetic resonance scanner with a resolution of 1.5 Tesla from Siemens cost €3.054 million. The contract stipulates that both installation and service should be carried out by Siemens. Nevertheless, the purchase was carried out via an intermediary, a company called Pharma Group, which is an unknown company based in the village of Veľké Leváre in the Bratislava region, according to former Health Minister Ivan Uhliarik, TASR reported.

Uhliarik pointed out that a certain Czech hospital has bought an MRI scanner with half the resolution for €1.1 million, while Masaryk University spent €1.9 million on a device with a resolution twice as high as the one purchased by UPJŠ.

“That’s still €1 million less than with UPJŠ,” said Uhliarik, as quoted by TASR. “[The university] could have bought three units.”

The public competition was carried out in line with the law and was approved by an agency of Education Ministry for structural funds, UPJŠ Rector Ladislav Mirossay responded, adding that a contract has been signed, but the purchase has not yet taken place, the Sme daily reported.

“We consider comparison of different devices without precise technical specification to be incorrect and misleading,” UPJŠ Medical Faculty spokesperson Jaroslava Oravcová said, as quoted by Sme.


Source: TASR, Sme

Compiled by Roman Cuprik from press reports
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