The report claims that the Trump administration could have paid too much by as much as $ 500 million and compared its contract to one negotiated by the Obama administration in 2014. The report quotes “thousands of pages of previous non-public documents,” including emails between Philips and the administration. Both the White House and Philips reject the report’s conclusions.
The report says that in 201
The panel’s staff wrote that “there is no indication” that the fans purchased in 2020 provided “any benefit” over the fans in the middle of negotiations between the Philips and Obama administrations.
Philips told subcommittee staff that according to the contract with the Trump administration, it is not obligated to complete its delivery of the fans until September 2022, according to the report. It sent 200 fans to HHS in June, about six weeks after the panel’s probe formally began, the report said.
The congressional report found that HHS paid more for Philips fans than more than 90 other buyers in the United States. The subcommittee claimed that the vast majority of US buyers could negotiate prices between $ 9,327 and $ 12,313 per unit, compared to the US government’s agreed price of $ 15,000.
“The American people were deceived and Donald Trump and his team were taken to cleaners,” the Illinois Democratic rep said. Raja Krishnamoorthi, Chair of the Economic and Consumer Policy Subcommittee, in a statement. “The Trump administration’s misalignment of fan procurement for the country’s inventory cost the American people dearly during our worst public health crisis of our generation.”
But Judd Deere, a White House spokesman, called the report “partisan”, “misleading” and “incorrect”.
“This partisan report is nothing more than a stunt intended solely to politicize the coronavirus,” Deere wrote. “Because of the president’s leadership, the United States is leading the world in the production and acquisition of fans. No American who needed a fan was denied one, and no American who needs a fan in the future will be denied. Democrats should be ashamed of themselves for this deception. and incorrect report. “
The report is also highly critical of Philips and accuses it of profiting during a crisis. The leader of Philips Respironic’s parent company strongly disputed the report results.
“We do not recognize the conclusions of the subcommittee’s report and we do not believe that all the information we provided was reflected in the report,” said Frans van Houten, CEO of Royal Philips, in a statement. “I want to make it clear that Philips has not raised prices at any time to take advantage of the crisis.”
“Philips is proud to contribute to the fight against the pandemic through its emergency patient care and diagnostic products,” he added.
CNN’s Nikki Carvajal and Scott Bronstein contributed to this report.