Following the Economic, Social and Ecologic Emergency declared by the National Government amid COIVD-19 pandemic, on March 31, 2010 through Decree 499 of 2020, new measures were taken in order to facilitate the acquisition in the international market, by public entities, of medical devices and personal protection elements necessary for the attention of confirmed and suspected COVID-19 cases.
Therefore, taking into account the recommendations made by WHO, the need of having adequate elements for facing the COVID-19 crisis, and considering that currently there are complex conditions for the acquisition of said goods as there is a lack of availability, long-term deliveries and an inelastic demand, the National Government set forth that contracts for the acquisition of these goods are exempt from applying the Public Procurement Statue and, consequently, will be regulated by private law rules.
Additionally, public entities may directly enter into contracts for the acquisition of these goods with foreign legal entities and individuals, which will not be bound to set their domicile or to open a branch in Colombia, nor to grant a power of attorney for executing these contracts.
The goods that can be purchased following these rules are those established in article 1 of Decree 438 of 2020 plus personal protection elements for the management of suspicious and confirmed cases of COVID-19. Some of those goods are:
- Vital signs monitor
- Oxygen cylinder
- Portable X Ray equipment
Finally, the contracting public entities entering into this type of contracts shall submit all the contract’s information to the competent fiscal watchdog within three days following their execution.