The Army Corps of Engineers Friday wrapped up their week-long survey of the structural integrity of Guam Memorial Hospital. Before they left they briefed GMH administrators and island leaders about what they found.
Lt. Gov. Josh Tenorio said their preliminary estimate of the cost to make all the repairs needed is over $200 million dollars.
A wide range of issues were identified by the Army Corps during their briefing including the leaky roof, exterior window deficiencies, the lack of an essential emergency system, inadequate installation of a full sprinkler system, insufficient ventilation and a deficient structural design.
Lt. Gov. Josh Tenorio said they will be preparing a report calculating the costs in the coming months.
“Throughout the month of December, they’ll be doing their cost estimates. We have a very excellent team. These are the national experts in hospitals that were brought to Guam and I expect in the next few months they’ll give us a very detailed plan of action,” Tenorio said.
Tenorio said the concerns cited by the Army Corps of Engineers are the same concerns they all share.
“No matter what, either we gut this place or we build a new place, there are immediate things that need to get done and they’re going to give us a price tag on what it’s going to cost to modernize this hospital in its current location and what it will cost to construct a new one,” Tenorio said.
GMH chief planner William Kando said it will be some months before the Army Corps of Engineers report is ready.
“They’re anticipating by March of next year. That’s a long time. Well, don’t forget they have cost estimators here. They have people here … it’s going to be really a good blueprint going forward,” he said.
The funding to either make repairs or build a new hospital has not yet been identified. Tenorio said the administration will work together with the Legislature to work out a plan to find the funds that are needed.
“The big decision again is are we going to repair this hospital and bring it up to where it needs to be? Or build a new hospital? And that decision is going to be guided by the report the Army Corps of Engineers gives us,” Tenorio said.