DTI checks prices and supply of face shields

Following the pronouncement of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) where commuters on public transportation will be mandated to wear face shields aside from face masks effective August 15, 2020, the Department of Trade and Industry’s Consumer Protection Group Undersecretary Ruth B. Castelo conducts spot-check monitoring activity on the prices and supply of face shields in Bambang, Manila. 

While the Department of Health (DOH) is the agency on top of face shields, Undersecretary Castelo says that DTI will always be on the ground to support DOH in ensuring reasonable prices of medical devices amid the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic through its monitoring and enforcement arm, the Fair Trade Enforcement Bureau (FTEB). 

The DOH issued Department Memorandum Circular (DMC) No. 2020-0345 that sets the SRP of face shields to P26.00 – P50.00. The Health Department clarifies that this only applies to basic non-medical grade face shields for community use. Another issuance will be released for medical grade face shields. 

DTI reported that out of all the monitored establishments, some sell face shields ranging from P28.00 to P70.00 while other establishments already ran out of stock.  

As to supplies, DTI noted that other establishments enforce purchase of limit for ten (10) pieces per person to ensure enough supply for every consumer. 

“The Department encourages the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) face shields as long as it will serve the same purpose wherein materials are made of plastic, acetate, or soft drinks bottles made of Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) plastics.” Undersecretary Castelo underscores. 

Moreover, DTI heightens its consumer protection through its assistance to the DOH on monitoring such medical devices to prevent unscrupulous businesses from illegal acts of price manipulation and unconscionable sales acts and practices pursuant to Republic Act (RA)7581 or the Price Act and RA 7394 or the Consumer Act of the Philippines.  

For more information, consumers may visit the DTI website at www.dti.gov.ph or may call Consumer Care Hotline at DTI (1-384) or email at consumercare@dti.gov.ph for questions and or clarifications.♦

Date of Release: 13 August 2020