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Impact of the Indian Health Service's Delivery of Information Technology/Information Security Services and Opioid Prescribing Practices

The Indian Health Service (IHS) has a decentralized management structure that is separated into two major categories: Headquarters and 12 Area Offices. The Area Offices are responsible for overseeing 26 hospitals, 59 health centers, and 32 health stations, some of which are located in remote locations. The Office of Inspector General found that hospitals with limited cybersecurity resources struggle to implement information technology improvements and update the IHS electronic heath record system. In addition, IHS faces challenges in combating the opioid abuse epidemic. We will analyze and compare information technology/information security (IT/IS) operations and opioid prescribing practices at five IHS hospitals to determine whether (1) IHS's decentralized management structure has affected its ability to deliver adequate IT/IS services in accordance with Federal requirements and (2) hospitals prescribed and dispensed opioids in accordance with IHS policies and procedures.

Announced or Revised Agency Title Component Report Number(s) Expected Issue Date (FY)
December 2017 Indian Health Service Impact of the Indian Health Service's Delivery of Information Technology/Information Security Services and Opioid Prescribing Practices Office of Audit Services W-00-17-42020; A-18-17-11400 2018

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