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Military Treatment Facilities: Internal Control Activities Need Improvement
The $24 billion Military Health System provided health care to over 8 million eligible beneficiaries. Although Congress has provided sizeable increases in funding for health care over the past few years, the Department of Defense (DOD) has needed supplemental appropriations for 6 of the last 8 fiscal years from 1994 to 2001 because its costs were higher than expected. The growing budgetary pressure increases the risk of not achieving the mission of the organization. DOD's military treatment facilities (MTF) represent over half of DOD's health care expenditures. The three MTF's reviewed have not effectively implemented internal control activities in the areas of eligibility, billings and collections, expired drugs, personal property management, and government purchase card usage. The three MTFs also did not identify all patients with third party insurance coverage. In addition, they frequently did not bill those insurers even when they knew that such coverage existed, thereby losing opportunities to collect millions of dollars of reimbursements for services. Ineffective physical and financial controls over personal property assets and indications of control breakdowns in the use of government purchase cards existed at the three facilities.
Approved For Public Release