A comprehensive investigation by the Pentagon’s Office of Inspector General, as reported by NBC News, has revealed significant mismanagement in the White House Medical Unit’s pharmacy operations, spanning previous administrations before President Biden. The inquiry, initiated in 2018, was driven by allegations of improper medical practices at the clinic.
The investigation’s findings disclose that the White House Medical Unit, staffed by military and civilian employees and under the Defense Department’s oversight, provided healthcare services to ineligible staff members and improperly managed prescription medications, including controlled substances.
Covering a period that includes the Trump administration, the probe unearthed issues dating back to 2009. It found that Schedule II drugs, such as fentanyl and oxycodone, were not separated in inventory records as required by federal regulations. Additionally, handwritten records from the Trump era were riddled with errors and lacked clarity.
Former White House physician to Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump, Rep. Ronny Jackson, R-Texas, who left his position in 2018, was not directly named in this report. A spokesperson for Jackson clarified his roles during the mentioned timeframes, distancing him from the administrative duties of the Medical Unit.
While the Inspector General’s report covered a period over two presidential administrations from 2009-2018, a constant of this era was Dr. Ronny Jackson.
The report also revealed substantial expenditure on brand-name medications like Ambien and Provigil, costing significantly more than their generic equivalents. Investigators’ attempts to obtain earlier records were hampered as officials stated pharmaceutical records were retained for only two years.
This lack of oversight, as per the report, raised the risk of prescribing errors and inadequate medication management, posing health and safety risks for patients treated within the unit. The report concluded with a series of policy recommendations to enhance pharmaceutical oversight, improve medication management, and ensure patient eligibility.
The Pentagon has concurred with these recommendations, as indicated in an attached letter to the report. The White House deferred comments on the report to the Defense Department, which has not commented on the findings. The Trump campaign also did not immediately respond to requests for comment.