Open Recommendations (152 total)

COVID-19: HHS Should Clarify Agency Roles for Emergency Return of U.S. Citizens during a Pandemic

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2 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should plan and conduct regular exercises with relevant stakeholders—including federal partners, state, local, and territorial governments—to test repatriation plans in response to a pandemic and update relevant plans based on lessons learned. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should revise or develop new emergency repatriation response plans that clarify agency roles and responsibilities, including those for an evacuation and quarantine, during a pandemic. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

COVID-19: Sustained Federal Action Is Crucial as Pandemic Enters Its Second Year

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5 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should make the Department's different sources of publicly available COVID-19 data accessible from a centralized location on the internet. This could improve the federal government's communication with the public about the ongoing pandemic. See Health Care Indicators enclosure. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should ensure that the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, in consultation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, requires nursing homes to offer COVID-19 vaccinations to residents and staff and design and implement associated quality measures. See Nursing Homes enclosure. (Recommendation 4)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should finalize and implement a post-payment review process to validate COVID-19 Uninsured Program claims and to help ensure timely identification of improper payments, including those resulting from potential fraudulent activity, and recovery of overpayments. See Relief for Health Care Providers enclosure. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should ensure that the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention work with the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health to develop a process for sharing information to facilitate decision-making and guidance consistency related to devices with emergency use authorization. See Emergency Use Authorizations for Medical Devices enclosure. (Recommendation 8)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should ensure that the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention collects data specific to the COVID-19 vaccination rates in nursing homes and makes these data publicly available to better ensure transparency and that the necessary information is available to improve ongoing and future vaccination efforts for nursing home residents and staff. See Nursing Homes enclosure. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

COVID-19: Critical Vaccine Distribution, Supply Chain, Program Integrity, and Other Challenges Require Focused Federal Attention

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2 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should develop and make publicly available a comprehensive national COVID-19 testing strategy that incorporates all six characteristics of an effective national strategy. Such a strategy could build upon existing strategy documents that the Department of Health and Human Services has produced for the public and Congress to allow for a more coordinated pandemic testing approach. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

HHS partially agreed with our recommendation. In January 2021, HHS agreed that the department should take steps to more directly incorporate some of the elements of an effective national strategy, but expressed concern that producing such a strategy at this time could be overly burdensome on the federal, state, and local entities that are responding to the pandemic, and that a plan would be outdated by the time it was finalized or potentially rendered obsolete by the rate of technological advancement. Additionally, HHS stated that, to be of value to the whole of nation response to COVID-19, testing plans need to establish guidelines and use metrics that are operationally relevant, which necessitates strategic flexibility in testing plans to guide those managing the response in the use of available resources to address local and state conditions rather than a single static nationwide plan. As of March 2021, HHS has not implemented this recommendation.
Department of Health and Human Services To improve the federal government's response to COVID-19 and preparedness for future pandemics, the Secretary of Health and Human Services should immediately establish an expert committee or use an existing one to systematically review and inform the alignment of ongoing data collection and reporting standards for key health indicators. This committee should include a broad representation of knowledgeable health care professionals from the public and private sectors, academia, and nonprofits. (Recommendation 6)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

HHS partially agreed with our recommendation. HHS agreed that it should establish a dedicated working group or other mechanism with a focus on addressing COVID-19 data collection shortcomings. However, HHS said because of resource constraints and the ongoing response to the pandemic, it could not commit to immediately doing so. As of February 2021, HHS had no additional updates.

Federal Research: Agencies Need to Enhance Policies to Address Foreign Influence

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1 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Health and Human Services The Secretary of Health and Human Services should instruct the Director of the National Institutes of Health to update the agency's conflict of interest policy to include a definition on non-financial conflicts, such as the one developed by OSTP, and address these conflicts, both foreign and domestic. (Recommendation 6)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.