Health Secretary Tom Price Wasted $341,000 on Improper Travel, Inquiry Finds

Health Secretary Tom Price Wasted $341,000 on Improper Travel, Inquiry Finds

WASHINGTON — Tom Price, the former secretary of health and human services, repeatedly violated government travel rules and wasted at least $341,000 by billing taxpayers for his use of chartered jets and military aircraft, federal investigators said Friday.

The inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services, Daniel R. Levinson, documented the abuses in a blistering report on what he described as Mr. Price’s “lack of compliance with federal requirements.”

He said the government should try to recoup the money improperly spent on Mr. Price’s travels to such places as Florida, Colorado and Texas, as well as China, Germany, Japan, Liberia, Switzerland and Vietnam.

The inspector general examined 21 trips in which Mr. Price had used chartered aircraft, military aircraft, commercial aircraft or the fleet of planes equipped for use by the president and vice president. He found that 20 of the 21 flights did not comply with federal requirements.

The total cost of the 21 trips was $1.2 million, the report said. The most expensive trips were an eight-day visit to Asia on military aircraft, which cost $432,400; a weeklong visit to Africa and Europe on military planes, which cost $234,400; and a charter flight from Seattle to Washington, D.C., which cost $121,500.

Mr. Price took chartered aircraft to many cities in the United States when lower-cost commercial flights were available, Mr. Levinson said. He found that Mr. Price had spent $14,955 on a round-trip charter flight between Washington and Philadelphia.

Mr. Price, an orthopedic surgeon from Georgia, resigned in September after losing the confidence of President Trump, who had promised to drain the swamp of a corrupt capital.

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