New OIG Finding: Material Obstruction of an Investigation
January 10, 2024
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) is excited to announce that on June 9, 2023, Public Act 103-0076 was signed into law, which made Material Obstruction of an Investigation a new Health Care Worker Registry (Registry) reportable finding. The new finding means that there are now serious consequences for failing to cooperate or interfering with OIG investigations. The definition of Material Obstruction of an Investigation is as follows:
“Material Obstruction of an Investigation is the purposeful interference with an investigation of physical abuse, sexual abuse, mental abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation and includes, but is not limited to, the withholding or altering of documentation or recorded evidence; influencing, threatening, or impeding witness testimony; presenting untruthful information during an interview; failing to cooperate with an investigation conducted by the OIG. Further, if an employee, following a criminal investigation of physical abuse, sexual abuse, mental abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation, is convicted of an offense that is factually predicated on the employee presenting untruthful information during the course of the investigation, that offense constitutes obstruction of an investigation.”
OIG expects that, as a result of the new Material Obstruction of an Investigation finding, employees will be less likely to engage in cover-up behavior, because they will be aware that they could risk their employment if they are placed on the Registry and would be barred from working for any Health Care Employer in Illinois, as provided by the Healthcare Worker Background Check Act, 25 ILCS 46/15.
Please see the OIG Hotline poster to be prominently posted at each DD living site and day program.