GAO’s 2017 Performance and Accountability Report—More than $73 Billion in Financial Benefits

cover of 2017 reportIt’s that time of year again, the time we like to share the results of our work with you, the taxpayer. This year our audit work produced over $73 billion in financial benefits. In other words, for every $1 Congress invested in us, we returned $128.

And we don’t just work to save you money—we also aim to improve government effectiveness. This year, we recommended more than 1,200 ways that the federal government could improve programs and operations. How? Among other things, our reports prompted federal agencies to:

  • Streamline the appeals process for veterans’ disability claims
  • Prevent paying $480 million in fraudulent refunds in fiscal years 2015 and 2016
  • Inspect more foreign drug manufacturing facilities
  • Issue a rule requiring drug companies to report data on the sale and use of antibiotics for use in food animals
  • Develop a strategy to address the use of opioids during pregnancy to help prevent Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome in newborns

We also identified key services that help youth with autism transition from high school to adulthood. As you can see our reviews and investigations touched on a wide range of federal programs, involving nearly every federal agency. And we don’t just report on the results of our work—we testify.

Congress called upon our experts to testify nearly 100 times this year. Among other topics, we testified on how agencies could better:

  • Reduce payment errors in Medicaid
  • Strengthen the nation’s cybersecurity
  • Improve border security
  • Improve Navy readiness and training
  • Protect older adults from abuse by guardians

Our 2017 Performance and Accountability Report has the full details on what we accomplished in the past fiscal year, information on how we calculate results and find savings, and what’s on the horizon for next year.


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