VIDEO: JMI Files Suit Against GMH and OPA Over Procurement Award

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Guam – The Guam Memorial Hospital and the Office of Public Accountability are being sued by a company protesting the award of a contract for kidney dialysis machines.

 

JMI Edison filed action in Superior Court on Wednesday also naming MedPharm, the company that won the contract. JMI says not only was the OPA’s decision to ratify the contract made in error, but the hospital’s decision to award the contract to MedPharm was done illegally.

JMI Edison, through the law firm Civille and Tang, is asking the Superior Court to issue a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against the Guam Memorial Hospital over the procurement of portable kidney machines.

Both JMI and MedPharm were bidders in the procurement of dialysis machines, but JMI lost the contract to MedPharm. JMI says the awarding of the contract to MedPharm was made in error because JMI had filed a protest within the allotted timeframe. And JMI states, filing a protest should automatically halt any further action on the procurement award.

Instead of issuing a stay, the hospital sidestepped JMI and awarded the contract to MedPharm, the complaint states.

JMI then took its complaint to the Office of Public Accountability. While Public Auditor Doris Flores Brooks upheld the contract, she stated in her decision that she did so reluctantly and admonished the hospital for violating JMI’s rights, calling the procurement not fair or conducive to an open and transparent procurement process.

With no other choice, JMI took its complaint to the Superior Court. In this complaint, JMI agrees with the OPA that GMH violated their rights, but asserts that the OPA’s decision to approve the contract was made in error. JMI says it was erroneous because the OPA relied on false claims made by GMH. Specifically, JMI is referring to the hospital’s claims that voiding the contract with MedPharm would be detrimental to GMH and that funding could have been lost.

Meanwhile, GMH Administrator Joe Verga declined to comment on the merits of the case since it is in litigation, but he did respond to the OPA’s decision. 104

“We did not do anything improper, we did not violate any procurement rules. We did not imperil any funds. We followed legal advice and we followed all procurement requirements to the letter,” he states.

GMH’s Attorney Tom Fisher was not available for comment as of news time.