Marianas Variety Guam Edition – The Local and Regional Newspaper

12 23Mon02022015

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Back Opinion Old and new hospitals must work together

Old and new hospitals must work together

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BUENAS yan håfa adai todu hamyo! My previous Across the Aisle article several weeks ago was on the topic of the new hospital, and the positive benefits I believe it will bring to the people of Guam. Since then, I had the pleasure of attending a presentation, which updated the general public on the progress of hospital construction, the anticipated economic impact, and workforce needs.

I was extremely pleased by the information provided at the presentation, mostly because the hospital is set as a partnership with Guam, and the economic impact it will bring is not a result of the anticipated military realignment.

During the presentation, I couldn’t help notice the beaming smiles on the faces of the foundation members. These individuals worked tirelessly over a five-year period; and this presentation was a manifest of their planning into a reality – in about two years, this hospital will be open for business.

We all know how badly we need more bed space as well as advanced medical treatment on-island, and this new approach is very reassuring.

It was then that I remembered a recent oversight hearing of our current hospital, wherein concerns were expressed about the regulatory needs in order to ensure there is no double standard of care for the people of Guam, regardless of economic status.

Of the many concerns raised, most notable are:

  • GMH management stated a $35 million subsidy might be needed to address a loss of insured client base;
  • A possible mass exodus of medical experts from GMH to the new hospital; and
  • Arrangements need to be made between the hospitals for complex procedures being performed on self-pay patients.

These are extremely valid concerns, so I propose that we empanel a group of experts, much like the group formed for the new hospital, to ensure an established working relationship between the hospitals from day one.

Also, because the aforementioned concerns have already been discussed, more communication is needed in order to assure our community that the benefits associated with the new hospital will impact all; and our current public hospital will continue to be a center of excellence – as exhibited by the recent upholding of accreditation by JCAHO.

Congratulations are in order for the staff and management of both hospitals! I commend all projects, such as the new hospital, that are coming to Guam to serve our people.

Biba taotao tano yan biba Guåhan!!

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