Thursday, February 10, 2022

State Auditor releases Health Department audit

Cindy Byrd Releases Health Department Audit
"Oklahoma taxpayers paid for it - they should get to see it."

OKLAHOMA CITY (Wednesday, February 9, 2022) – Oklahoma State Auditor & Inspector Cindy Byrd today publicly released her audit of the Oklahoma State Department of Health.

Former Attorney General Mike Hunter requested the audit on April 28, 2020. Byrd delivered the final audit report to the AG’s office on May 21, 2021. Byrd met with newly appointed Attorney General O’Connor on August 4th and notified him of the audit status.

“I believe all public records should be open and easily accessible to the taxpayers,” Auditor Cindy Byrd said.  “After receiving an Open Records Request, and consulting with outside legal counsel, I have concluded there is no Oklahoma statute that gives any state official the authority to withhold this information. This audit is an inspection of existing public records. Consequently, my final audit report is neither confidential nor exempt from the Open Records Act. I feel compelled, both legally and ethically, to release the full audit report to the public. Oklahoma taxpayers paid for it – they should get to see it.”

The full audit report is available here and posted on the Oklahoma State Auditor & Inspector’s website at


OKLAHOMA CITY (Feb. 9, 2022) – Governor Kevin Stitt released the following statement after reviewing the investigative audit of the Oklahoma State Department of Health:

“First, I appreciate the hard work and thorough investigation conducted by Auditor Byrd and I continue to be fully committed to transparency in state government.

“COVID was an unprecedented crisis across the world. From the beginning my top priority has been to protect the health and safety of Oklahomans. In early March 2020 we were one of the first states to shut down nursing homes to protect the most vulnerable, saving countless lives. To keep hospitals open and our frontline workers safe, I issued executive orders to get PPE to our state as quickly as possible. Looking back today, we can acknowledge that there were technical errors while still knowing we did everything we could to protect citizens of this state during an unimaginable time.

“Lastly, I am grateful to Attorney General John O’Connor for working with OSDH and fighting to ensure the state receives the money it is owed.”


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