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Northern Health part of fraud risk review

The B.C. Auditor General found 61% of the public entities surveyed had been victims of fraud in the past year.
UHNBC
Northern Health was one of 23 public agencies whose approach to fraud risk management was reviewed by the B.C. Auditor General.

Northern Health was one of 23 B.C. public agencies whose approach to fraud risk management was reviewed by the B.C. Auditor General.

In a report released on Tuesday, the Auditor General found that 61 per cent of organizations surveyed had been victims of at least one type of fraud in the past year. The review included a mix of Crown corporations, health authorities, universities, school districts and other public bodies.

"This shows us how organizations perceive fraud and its impact," said Auditor General Michael Pickup. "All organizations are vulnerable to fraud, but many in the public sector don't appear to be using all available tools to manage the risk. The management at these organizations are responsible for preventing and detecting fraud."

Of the agencies reporting being victims of fraud in the past year, 43 per cent reported theft of physical assets, 22 per cent reported misappropriation of funds, 17 per cent reported information theft, 17 per cent reported regulatory or compliance breaches, and 17 per cent reported internal financial fraud.

Three quarters reported their risk of physical theft of assets as low, despite nearly half reporting thefts in the past year, the report found.

One of the organizations had no fraud risk management policies at all, and 35 per cent didn’t have a stand-alone fraud risk management policy, but referred to fraud in other policies.

“(Thirty-nine) per cent of organizations said they do not have processes to identify and document ongoing fraud risks,” the report said. “(Forty-three) per cent said they had not established a schedule to evaluate their fraud risk management practices.”

The report did not break out data for each individual agency, including Northern Health.

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