Procurement Audit & Reforms

Procurement is the function which makes available the required goods and services to the users and it plays a vital role in effective operation of an organization. Generally major portion of the fund allocated to a project or programme is utilized in procurement. An ideal, procurement system helps in judicious utilization of scarce resources, avoiding wastage and overstocking/ stock out and delivers value for money. The health sector is no exception.

Health is a primary need of every citizen and vast majority of the Indian population depends on public health institutions. An efficient procurement system would help the institutions to deliver the quality medical services to the needy in a speedy and a cost effective manner, thus earning credibility and generating goodwill.

Efficiency, equity and transparency are the basic parameters to be adhered to in a sound procurement system.
Health institutions, basically being service orientedĀ  set up, could not lay much emphasis on procurement and like functions may be due to lackĀ  of manpower and or fund. However, with the advent of NRHM, sufficient funds have been allocated to the states for a variety of programmes including new initiatives. As a result, in addition to providing health care, these institutions have been entrustedĀ  with responsibility of management aspects like HR, Finance, civil construction, procurement etc. and NRHM, Mo h &FW, Govt. of India have circulated various guidelines for these activities.

In the context of the country, the North Eastern states except Assam, have smaller population and in view of proportionate fund allocations, they generally receive smaller amounts. However, procurement procedures and guidelines are same irrespective of procurement value.

In order to ascertain whether proper procurement systems are in place in the states, the lacunae thereof and the reforms/ remedial measures thereto need to be undertaken, assessment of the procurement management of each state is considered necessary. With this end in view, RRC-NE got the assessment of procurement systems of Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland done through an external agency while earlier NHSRC did a similar exercise for the state of Assam.

The assessment reports and recommendations for reforms have since been received and forwarded to the respective states for their perusal and to take necessary actions on the reforms recommended.