Bulgaria’s Health Ministry in new urgent purchase of Covid tests for pupils

Bulgaria’s Health Ministry announced on January 14 a new urgent tender process to buy non-intrusive saliva tests for Covid-19 for school pupils in the first to 12th grades.

The announcement came three days after Health Minister Assena Serbezova shut down a purchase process dating from December 30 after an internal audit found shortcomings in that process.

The new tender calls for the purchase of 7.61 million tests, divided into five separate lots, depending on delivery times.

The ministry said that each participant may offer different quantities of tests depending on their ability to deliver within the specified period.

The minimum number of tests that each participant may offer is 10 000.

The tender process sets a number of requirements, including that at the date of delivery, the tests must have a residual shelf life of at least 75 per cent of that declared by the manufacturer.

The ranking of offers will be announced by the end of the day on January 18, the Health Ministry said.

In other news on January 14 related to Covid-19 in Bulgaria:

Serbezova told reporters in Parliament said Bulgaria is considering abolishing the green certificate for antibodies.

The green certificate for antibodies was introduced by then-caretaker health minister Stoicho Katsarov in 2021.

Serbezova said that the newly-announced national operational plan against Covid-19 envisages synchronising Bulgaria’s green certificate system with the EU one. The green certificate for antibodies is not recognised elsewhere in the EU and is valid only in Bulgaria.

Former energy minister, GERB MP Temenuzhka Petkova is in hospital with Covid-19, Serbezova said.

Serbezova said that given that Petkova was in the National Assembly chamber on January 13 and attended a meeting of the parliamentary portfolio committee on energy, the MPs who are members of that committee should self-isolate.

(Photo: Education Ministry)

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