GAO’s recommendations database contains report recommendations that still need to be addressed. GAO’s priority recommendations are those that we believe warrant priority attention. We sent letters to the heads of key departments and agencies, urging them to continue focusing on these issues. Below you can search only priority recommendations, or search all recommendations.

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As of April 18, 2018, there are 5,184 open recommendations, of which 465 are priority recommendations. Recommendations remain open until they are designated as Closed-implemented or Closed-not implemented.

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Subject Term: "Medical information systems"

2 publications with a total of 2 priority recommendations
Director: Valerie C. Melvin
Phone: (202) 512-6304

1 open priority recommendation
Recommendation: To ensure progress is made toward the implementation of any IT enhancements needed to establish electronic public health situational awareness network capabilities mandated by PAHPRA, the Secretary of HHS should direct the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response to conduct all IT management and oversight processes related to the establishment of the network in accordance with Enterprise Performance Life Cycle Framework guidance, under the leadership of the HHS CIO.

Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Status: Open
Priority recommendation

Comments: In March 2018, HHS officials stated that they considered the recommendation to be open, but did not indicate whether or not they concurred with the recommendation. In their response, they stated that representatives from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response and the Office of the Chief Information Officer met on September 15, 2017 to discuss broad issues and a strategy for developing a situational awareness network. According to HHS, topics such as resources, available funding, outreach, and incorporating data from external partners were discussed. However, HHS did not provide a plan of action for implementing the recommendation. Until steps are taken to implement our recommendation, HHS may continue to lack the necessary progress needed in order to establish an electronic public health situational awareness network capability mandated by PAHPRA.
Director: Daniel Bertoni
Phone: (202) 512-7215

1 open priority recommendation
Recommendation: To improve the ability of the agency to detect and prevent potential physician-assisted fraud, and to help ensure new initiatives that use analytics to identify potential fraud schemes are successful, SSA should develop an implementation plan that identifies both short- and long-term actions, including: (1) timeframes for implementation; (2) resources and staffing needs; (3) data requirements, e.g., the collection of unique medical provider information; (4) how technology improvement will be integrated into existing technology improvements such as the Disability Case Processing System and National Vendor File; and (5) how different initiatives will interact and support each other.

Agency: Social Security Administration
Status: Open
Priority recommendation

Comments: As of August 2018, SSA reported taking several steps to use data analytics to detect potential fraud. According to SSA, the agency approved a fraud risk assessment of its disability programs in December 2017 and is aligning its anti-fraud efforts with the results of the assessment. SSA plans to select anti-fraud efforts based on the risk it is attempting to address, which may or may not involve strategies using data analytics. Additionally, SSA reported that it deployed an analytical model in December 2017 to identify potential collusion between administrative law judges and appointed representatives. As A result of this effort, SSA also identified several instances of potential physician-assisted fraud, which SSA has referred to its Inspector General's office for investigation. SSA states that it is reviewing the results of its model and plans to use the findings to support future analytics efforts, including a model focusing on unusual patterns between medical sources and representatives. To fully implement this recommendation, SSA will need to develop an implementation plan for anti-fraud efforts that describes how it will employ data analytics to detect potential fraud involving physicians and discusses approaches for addressing the various requirements listed in our recommendation.