Chapter alleges corruption at Tsehootsooi Medical Center

By Alastair Lee Bitsoi
Navajo Times

WINDOW ROCK, Jan. 30, 2014

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(Times photo – Donovan Quintero)

Chief Executive Officer of the Tsehootsooi Medical Center Leland Leonard, left, speaks to Deborah Cayedito, a community advocate and member of the Diné Advocacy Community Alliance on Wednesday outside the Navajo Nation Council Chamber in Window Rock.

Deswood Johnson wants to know why he's being denied healthcare services at Tsehootsooi Medical Center, when CEO Leland Leonard and the Fort Defiance Indian Hospital Board are reportedly spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on gifts.

Johnson, in a written statement to the Navajo Times, said that since TMC began operating under Public Law 93-638 in 2010, as an Indian Self Determination and Education Assistance Act hospital, his primary care provider has changed six times.

"I have sleep apnea and require certain equipment to meet my health care needs," Johnson said, adding that he's been denied the purchase of these devices he used to get when TMC was an Indian Health Service facility prior to 2009.

Health equipment for his sleep apnea costs him about $500, Johnson said, and it's difficult for him to buy because he's unemployed.

Johnson's testimony, among that of many others attending a Jan. 12 Fort Defiance Chapter meeting, is the reason why the chapter and Fort Defiance Agency Council passed resolutions requesting financial, human resource, and procurement audits to examine the spending habits of Leonard, his administration and the FDIHB.

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