OCTOBER 26, 2007
Three months after a medical services company hired a Bush appointee who for years was in charge of Pentagon health programs the firm got a $790 million government contract to do work that two other firms proposed doing for millions less.
Wisconsin-based Logistics Health Inc got the lucrative government contract to provide immunizations and physical and dental exams for reservists and National Guard members even though a pair of equally capable firms entered bids that ranged from $80 million to $100 million less.
Inevitably, the speculation is that the Wisconsin company charging taxpayers millions more has a powerful connection in its new consultant, a former longtime assistant Secretary of Defense for health affairs in the Bush Administration.
A few months ago, Logistics Health Inc. hired the former high-ranking Defense Department official, William Winkenwerder, as a director and consultant and now a Congressional investigative unit is looking into conflict of interest accusations. Incidentally, the head of Logistics Health happens to be another former Bush official, former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson.
One complaint from a competing firm claims that the Wisconsin firm performed questionably under previous agreements with the Department of Health and Human Services and actually "put reservists and National Guardsmen at possible undue risk".
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