The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has lost or misplaced about $8.2 million worth of government property as of Sept. 30, 2007, and it has failed to always bar-code new property purchased since then, according to a report (PDF) from HHS' inspector general's office.
The estimate is based on a sample of 200 items in the CDC property-management system, which listed an inventory of almost 50,000 items valued at $350 million as of Sept. 30, 2007. From that sample, 15 items could not been found. Missing items included a $1.8 million enterprise storage array and a video-conference system valued at $900,000.
The inspector general also reviewed a sample of 200 purchase orders paid for in fiscal 2007 and found that 29 had not been recorded in the system or had been recorded at less than the purchase cost. Based on this sample, the inspector general estimated that the CDC property system had understated its fiscal 2007 purchases by about $1.5 million.
In response, the CDC said that it concurred with the inspector general's recommendations and that it has implemented measures during the past two years that coincide with the recommendations, including creating a property accountability officer position for each CDC center, institute and office and emphasizing property management. The CDC also said that, in its 2010 inventory, all but 13 items in its 55,566-item inventory have been accounted for.