Updated: Oct 13
By Pacific Island Times News Staff
The government of Guam has taken the first step toward the construction of an integrated health care complex that will house a new hospital as well new facilities for public health and mental health offices.
Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero on Wednesday signed a bill authorizing a 40-year lease-back arrangement and pledging funds for the major project dubbed "Twenty-First Century Healthcare Center."
Bill 121-36, authored by Sen. Joe San Agustin, is now Public Law 36-56.
"Today, the proverbial can that’s been kicked down the road for years, ends here and with your signature, the heartbeat of our islands’ healthcare infrastructure will remain strong with the 21st Century Healthcare Center,” San Agustin said.
The proposed project will incorporate a medical facility that will replace the aging Guam Memorial Hospital, the Department of Public Health and Social Services and the Guam Behavioral Health and Welfare Center.
"As we have experienced firsthand this past year and a half, itis especially true in the worst of times, when, in addition to the diverse medical needs of our community, our island is struck by crisis and calamity," Leon Guerrero said.