Most Corrupt Agencies
TRANSPLANT REPORT PROMPTS INQUIRY
A U.S. senator asks two federal agencies why they haven't taken action against nearly 50 substandard centers around the country.
By Charles Ornstein and Tracy Weber
LOS ANGELES TIMES, June 22, 2006 -- A prominent U.S. senator asked federal officials why they haven't acted against nearly 50 transplant centers nationwide that fail to meet federal benchmarks for patient survival and the number of transplants performed.
Sen. Charles E. Grassley, an Iowa Republican and chairman of the Finance Committee, made the request in letters to the administrators of two federal agencies that oversee the nation's transplantation system after The Times reported Thursday that one in five federally funded transplant programs do not meet one or both of the standards.
"I have been increasingly concerned about the oversight of the organ procurement and transplantation system," Grassley wrote to the heads of the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Health Resources and Services Administration.
It is the fourth time in the last year that Grassley has ordered investigations or demanded answers after Times reports detailing dangerous lapses in oversight of the national transplantation system. Three transplant centers in California have closed since September after their problems came to light.
© 2006 Los Angeles Times
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