Financial Management:

Briefing on the Results of the Financial Audit of the National Institutes of Health

AIMD-99-181R: Published: May 14, 1999. Publicly Released: May 14, 1999.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) fiscal year (FY) 1998 financial audit report.

GAO noted that: (1) the independent public accounting firm's (IPA) audit opinion went from qualified on all NIH principal statements for FY 1997 to unqualified on all principal statements except the Statement of Financing for FY 1998; (2) the IPA qualified its opinion on the FY 1997 principal statements because: (a) NIH had not performed a complete physical inventory in the past 4 years; and (b) the amount reported as the grant accrual could not be substantiated; (3) for FY 1998, the IPA issued a disclaimer of opinion on the Statement of Financing because NIH could not reconcile differences between its net cost and budgetary obligations; and (4) in NIH's response to the IPA's report, management concurred with the findings and stated that they would develop a corrective action plan to address the weaknesses.

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