The Indian Health Service continues to lose property at an alarming rate, according to a new Government Accountability Office report, which says the IHS managements failure to implement the GAOs earlier recommendations has contributed significantly to the agencys continued problems.
GAO faults Indian Health on equipment losses
From October 2007 through January 2009, about 1,400 items worth about $3.5 million were lost or stolen from agency facilities, which is in addition to the losses that the GAO revealed in a report last year. In a June 2008 report and July 2008 testimony we revealed gross mismanagement of property and waste at IHS, including the loss or theft of 5,000 computers and other property worth $15.8 million, according to a GAO letter to congressional leaders. The GAO said the IHS could provide only one example of an individual who was held financially liable for lost or stolen property during a one-year period.
According to the GAO report, the IHS said it is committed to proper and accountable property management. The agency also said it is confident that most, if not all, inventory currently unaccounted for will be identified as a result of implementing a property management information system that the agency began using years ago.
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