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HHS won’t disclose how it spent $8 billion in COVID funding, House committee says

A Republican-led letter calls on the agency to detail the status of the taxpayer money.

Published: August 10, 2023 5:16pm

A branch of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is not cooperating with efforts by members of Congress to determine how it spent nearly $8 billion of taxpayer COVID-19 funds, according to a Republican-led letter to the agency.

The letter was issued by the Energy and Commerce Committee and its two Subcommittees on Health and Oversight and Investigations. It accuses the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) of failing to be "fully forthcoming" about the money despite requests to be.

"Specifically, the Committee would like to understand whether significant amounts of these funds have actually been spent or are just sitting in bank accounts," the letter reads.

It also says SAMSHA hasn’t shown how another $900 million it put into a crisis care system has been used, if it has been used at all.

The agency has until August 23 to comply with Congress’s request for various information tables detailing where, how, and to whom the money was directed and used.

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