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IDB Statement on the Purchase of Ventilators in Bolivia

Bolivia’s Ministry of Health, based on an analysis of immediate and necessary actions to address the coronavirus crisis, purchased 170 Spanish-made ventilators of the RESPIRA brand. The devices were considered appropriate to help meet the increase in demand for mechanical ventilation for COVID-19 patients in municipalities where intensive-care services are lacking, and to complement the resources available in tertiary hospitals.

Following a request by the Bolivian Government, the Inter-American Development Bank facilitated the purchase of these devices as part of $82 million in financing that had been reassigned to support the country’s response to the public-health emergency. The contracting of goods and services financed by the IDB is performed by executing agencies that work with the government entity in charge of the project. The agencies solicit, receive and evaluate offers and award contracts.

For its part, the IDB examines the bidding procedures and contract to verify that the process is carried out in accordance with agreed practices. In coordination with executing agencies, the Bank performs subsequent project reviews and verifications, tracking results and assimilating the experience gained.

In this circumstance, the Bank followed the aforementioned steps, analyzing the executing agency’s solicitation of bids, the contract between the parties, and the legal details and technical arguments made by the agency, after which no objection was given to the process. The result of this initiative to date is the availability of the 170 ventilators in a very short period, given the complexity of the process and the extremely high global demand for medical equipment today.

The IDB will continue to collaborate on efforts to mitigate the impact of the pandemic in Bolivia and the region.

About the IDB 

The Inter-American Development Bank is devoted to improving lives. Established in 1959, the IDB is a leading source of long-term financing for economic, social and institutional development in Latin America and the Caribbean. The IDB also conducts cutting-edge research and provides policy advice, technical assistance and training to public and private sector clients throughout the region. 


Turner, Taos Lee

Turner, Taos Lee
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