WASHINGTON — The White House Medical Branch had “serious and systemic problems” with pharmacy operations and healthcare according to a scathing report by the Biden administration to unfit employees Ministry of DefenceOffice of the Inspector General.
The multi-year investigation stemmed from complaints in 2018 that a senior military medical officer “engaged in medical malpractice” at a White House clinic. The investigation focused on site visits and a three-year period during the Trump administration, as well as employee interviews dating back to 2009.
“The White House Medical Unit distributed prescription drugs, including controlled substances, to ineligible White House staff” The report was released this month he said.
The unit also kept records of Schedule II drugs such as fentanyl, hydrocodone, morphine and oxycodone in the same inventory that kept records for other drugs, according to the report, although federal regulations require them to be kept separate.
The report said the clinic’s handwritten notes from the Trump administration “often contained errors in medication counts, illegible text, or underlined text that was not marked appropriately.”
The White House Medical Department consists of several clinics located in Washington staffed by military and civilian personnel and administered by the Department of Defense.
Rep. Ronny Jackson, R-Texas, served as White House physician to former presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump before leaving in 2018. His congressional office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Jackson was not named in the inspector general’s report.
A separate one Pentagon inspector general reportSince 2021, Jackson has engaged in “inappropriate behavior” while serving as the White House physician.
The White House has reached out to the Defense Department for comment, which has not commented on the report’s findings. The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The report also says that the White House Office of Medicine has spent tens of thousands of dollars on brand-name drugs instead of cheaper generic equivalents during the Trump administration.
Between 2017 and 2019, the department spent about $46,500 on Ambien, a sleep medication that was “174 times more expensive than its generic equivalent,” the report said. During that period, the clinic spent nearly $100,000 on Provigil, a stimulant that was “55 times more expensive than its generic equivalent,” the report said.
In 2019, investigators tried to obtain earlier records, but White House Medical Branch officials said they only kept pharmacy records for two years, according to the report.
“Without the oversight of qualified pharmacy staff, the White House Medical Unit’s pharmaceutical management practices may be subject to prescription errors and inadequate medication administration, increasing the risk to the health and safety of patients treated within the unit.”
He also detailed the dispensing of drugs to ineligible White House staff, which meant some staffers “received free specialized care and surgery at military treatment facilities.” The department also dispensed drugs like Ambien and Provigil “without verifying the patient’s identity.” Part of the report referred to interviews with White House staffers until 2009, without specifying when such incidents occurred.
The Defense Department’s Office of Inspector General has recommended a number of policy changes for the White House Medical Branch, including developing a pharmaceutical control plan, developing procedures for drug storage, writing and dispensing prescriptions, and improving methods for determining patient eligibility.
According to a letter attached to the report, the Pentagon agreed with the recommendations.