Marianas Variety Guam Edition – The Local and Regional Newspaper

12 23Thu04172014

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Back Local News Public Health reports gains, cuts

Public Health reports gains, cuts

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DURING recent media briefings organized by the Calvo administration, the Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services reported on some of the savings it has realized and also budget constraints that the department suffers from.

Chief of Staff Frank Arriola reported that DPHSS generated a million-dollar savings by eliminating certain personnel positions. DPHSS Director James Gillan said the process did not affect the efficiency of the services currently implemented by the agency.

In terms of cuts, Gillan reported budget constraints to the Medically Indigent Program, or MIP.

According to Gillan, there are insufficient funds for the MIP, a locally-funded program that provides financial assistance to cover healthcare costs for eligible individuals.

Eligible individuals covered by the MIP include those who have resided on Guam for no less than six months or are currently residing on Guam; those who are not qualified to receive Medicare or Medicaid; those who are in foster care; and those who are qualified to receive temporary emergency medical care and assistance, as specified by law.

During the same media briefing, the governor said a lot of immigrants availed of the MIP; and to help shoulder the costs, he has requested the Department of Interior to enable those from the Freely Associated States to qualify for Medicaid.

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