Fraud Hotline 0800 424 888
Examples of recent fraud incidents at Waikato DHB
- An employee misappropriated restricted drugs from a department’s medicine room
- An employee misappropriated cash from accommodation monies received from patient support people staying on the hospital campus
- A contractor misappropriated cash from accommodation monies received from patient support people staying on the hospital campus
- An employee misappropriated cash from the cafeteria cash registers while serving customers at the tills
- An employee fraudulently used a DHB fuel card to pay for fuel to fill the employee’s personal vehicle
- An employee misused the DHB’s purchase ordering system to purchase gift cards and products from retail outlets for personal use
- A contractor stole at least five mobile phones from various services at Waikato Hospital
- A member of the public stole building materials from a construction site on the hospital campus
- Various employees falsified employment documentation by not disclosing their criminal convictions, or not providing full and accurate details of convictions, as required when recruited
- A visitor to the Waikato Hospital (while his relative was being attended to in ICU) carried out multiple burglaries on the campus using stolen DHB keys
- An employee presented forged documentation in support of claims for paid sick leave to care for their son
- An entity billed the DHB twice for a scam publication (Directory), along with many other organisations and businesses throughout the country
Calls to the hotline since 2009
- A previous DHB employee alleged that a DHB manager had regularly left the DHB premises during his work shifts, sometimes on the weekend, for personal reasons without authority, often using a DHB vehicle
- A DHB employee alleged that there existed potential nepotism within a DHB service involving the use of preferred contractors who receive work for unacceptably high prices
- A member of public (who had previously worked in the health sector) alleged that a Waikato DHB doctor was conducting a private practice for up to two days per week while also being paid as a full time DHB employee
- An ex-employee of the DHB alleged that a DHB service had replaced staff with external contractors at a considerably escalated labour cost
Since 1995, Audit and Compliance have prosecuted over 200 people for fraud in relation to fraudulent claims of tax payer funds, 54 were health providers and the rest were carer support claimants - around a third of these were initiated from fraud hotline calls.
Each year Audit and Compliance saves between $10 to $20 million caused by fraud and error. While by international standards this is low, it is money that can be redirected to providing essential health services.
For more information:
- Fraud Policy - facilitates the prevention and detection of fraud and outlines the appropriate steps if fraud is detected or suspected
- Code of Conduct - a commitment to ethical behaviour throughout the organisation contained in the Performance Management policy.
- Protected Disclosures - facilitating the disclosure and investigation of matters of serious wrong doing and protecting employees who, in accordance with the Act, disclose information about serious wrong doing in or by the organisation.
- Override of internal controls - fraud occurs when pressure, opportunity and rationalisation come together. Most people have pressures, everyone rationalises, when internal controls are absent or overriden, everyone has an opportunity to commit fraud.
- Fraud presentation
Waikato DHB will not tolerate fraud or corruption and perpetrators will face disciplinary action.
Fraud is any deliberate action or omission designed to deceive to derive some direct or indirect personal gain, benefit or advantage. A fraud therefore will typically have three elements: intent, deceit and gain.
Examples of fraud may include but are not limited to:
- forgery or alteration of cheques or other documents
- misappropriation or theft of funds, supplies or other assets including intellectual property
- irregularity in the handling or reporting of money
- manipulation of information or documents
- omission or fraudulent treatment of accounting records
- misrepresentation of timesheets and expense claims
- evasion of a Waikato DHB liability
- abuse of a conflict of interest
- trading on confidential or inside information
- accepting or granting of a kickback or bribe
- involvement in the rigging of a bid or price fixing
- hacking or other security breaches
- information systems related fraud such as manipulation of data, equipment, programmes or substituting records in accordance with the Waikato DHB Information Systems Security Policy and Protocol
- duplicate billing or attempting to procure payment by sending false invoices as a phantom vendor
- inappropriate use of Waikato DHB assets including motor vehicles.
The Protected Disclosures “Whistleblower” Policy and the legislation Protected Disclosure Act 2000, details the obligations and rights of employees and employers relating to notification of “serious wrongdoing”.
The Protected Disclosures Act (2000) defines a serious wrong doing to include:
- an unlawful, corrupt, or irregular use of public funds or public resources
- an act, omission or course of conduct that constitutes a serious risk to public health or public safety or the environment
- an act, omission or course of conduct that constitutes a serious risk to the maintenance:
- of the law, including the prevention, investigation, and detection of offences and the right to a fair trial
- an act, omission, or course of conduct that constitutes an offence
- an act, omission, or course of conduct by an employee that is oppressive, improperly discriminatory, or grossly negligent, or that constitutes gross mismanagement.