February 2, 2018
(Hagatna) – Less than 24 hours after GMH management released confidential accreditation information to two senators, the report and confidential findings were released to the media. In a letter to Speaker BJ Cruz yesterday, GMH Administrator Peter John Camacho stated, “Senator Rodriguez has been cautioned that reports released to him must be treated as privileged and confidential.”
Both Speaker BJ Cruz and Senator Dennis Rodriguez were cautioned by GMH that releasing the report by them or their staff could expose the hospital to future litigation and further diminish patient care.
“Today’s peer review confidentiality on GMHA was broken by one or more trusted people in public office. This breakdown in the integrity by political leaders has a chilling effect on our medical staff. We are now concerned if our medical staff peer review process will become public disclosures by our political leaders. The peer review process was meant for correction and restoration, and not punitive and litigious reasons,” Dr. Vince Duenas said.
Today’s violation of trust by public officials is why GMH expressed initial concern releasing information previously. The concern is now real.
“We recognize that there are some management issues affiliated with the findings, but this does not take away from the root of the issue at GMH – the Legislature has failed to fund GMH by as much as $30M, every single year, the past three decades,” Camacho said.
As a result of this breach, GMH must now also inquire if there is legal remedy to secure any lost future funding resulting from future lawsuits from the party or parties who released the information.
Senators need to stop playing politics with GMH and people’s lives. There is a solution before them now to fully fund GMH every single year moving forward and to address accreditation issues. This matter is in their hands, the GMH funding responsibility has always been theirs, not the hundreds of doctors, nurses, and GMH employees.
It’s time to get back to the real issue – fully fund GMH with a dedicated funding source.