The State Auditor’s Office has released their report on an investigation into Regional Medical Center in Manchester.
The investigation was requested by officials after concerns surfaced over certain travel reimbursements to former CEO Lon Butikofer (pictured below) and former System Fund Development Director Mike Briggs, as well as concerns regarding the use of the hospital’s credit card. The investigation spanned eight years from January 1, 2009 through March 15, 2017.
The concerns surfaced two years ago, with Briggs fired in February 2017 and Butikofer resigning at that time as well.
In the report released Wednesday, State Auditor Rob Sand says the special investigation identified over $256,000 in improper disbursements and $28,000 in unsupported disbursements. The improper disbursements include over $192,000 in improper payroll costs for unrecorded paid leave used by Butikofer and Briggs, over $52,000 in improper disbursements to Butikofer and Briggs and nearly $12,000 in charges to Regional Medical Center’s credit card.
Sand reported Butikofer and Briggs were reimbursed for mileage and meal costs for events which were improper or events which representatives of professional organizations reported did not happen on the dates claimed.
In addition, Regional Medical Center’s credit card was used for travel costs associated with these events.
You can find a link to the complete 94-page report here: https://www.auditor.iowa.gov/reports/file/56366/embed.
Regional Medical Center released a written statement by Board Chair Chris Tegeler shortly after the report came out Wednesday morning:
“As the Board Chairperson of Regional Medical Center, I represent the Governing Board of Trustees in providing a response to the state audit concerning behaviors of the previous Chief Executive Officer, Lon Butikofer and former System and Fund Development Director, Mike Briggs.
We understand the concerns and disappointment resulting from these individuals’ behaviors and actions. It has been very upsetting to us and we are focused on moving forward and have put several additional checks and balances in place to prevent this unfortunate situation from happening again at our local hospital. We appreciate the State Auditor’s office for its collaboration throughout this process and will follow any recommendations to improve our internal control processes.
Our Board has been pleased to have Charlie Button as our Chief Executive Officer. He has helped us continue to focus our healthcare system on what is best for our community. His door is open to everyone and wants to hear from members of the community. We share the goal and mission of continuing to grow and enhance our services so that we are here for you for decades to come.
We sincerely appreciate our community for your continued support of our healthcare system as we are truly dedicated to providing quality care close to home.”