GovGuam insurance bill signed into law

Guam Regional Medical City (PNC file photo)

Bill 30-35, which expands the healthcare provider options for government employees and retirees, is now Public Law 35-2.

“Knowing you can access the nearest hospital to you during an emergency is an assurance our government employees deserve,” Gov. Leon Guerrero said in signing the bill authored by Speaker Tina Muna Barnes’ bill.

Bill 30-35, the second bill Leon Guerrero has signed, requires the government health insurance negotiating team to only consider health insurance providers whose in-network coverage includes all public and private hospitals operating in Guam.

“As an ICU nurse, I have seen firsthand the kinds of emergencies that come through a hospital. I know from personal experience how important it is to receive critical and timely care during a life and death situation,” the governor said.

In her transmittal letter to acting Speaker Telena Nelson, Leon Guerrero said, “The government of Guam employees should be allowed to expect that their health insurance cover quality health care at whichever hospital, public or private, they may unexpectedly find themselves on Guam. By signing this bill, I join the Legislature in making this expectation a reality.”

The Guam Regional Medical City welcomed the signing of the bill.

“By signing this bill, Governor Leon Guerrero has reaffirmed her support of both the island’s hospitals and her commitment to providing better healthcare for the people of Guam,” said Dr. Michael Cruz, GRMC president and CEO.

He said GRMC does not anticipate any major rate increases to be incurred by taxpayers due to Public Law 35-2. “In fact,” Cruz said, former Sen. Francis Santos reached out to management at TakeCare last week, to begin the negotiation process in hopes of reaching an agreement that is less or equal to what GovGuam employees are currently paying for healthcare that includes GRMC.”

GRMC said it will {remain committed to becoming a center of excellence in the region for stroke, cardiac, and cancer care, while working in collaboration with our partner Guam Memorial Hospital to provide the people of Guam with the very best healthcare.”

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Jolene joined the PNC team in 2017, as a producer, co-anchor and investigative reporter covering law enforcement, courts and crimes. Notable coverage includes the Ehlert case, the Mark Torre Jr. trial, the Allan Agababa trial, exclusive pieces on the Life of a Drug Dealer/Addict, and Life behind bars...the story of Honofre Chargualaf and Kevin Cruz. In 2019, she was promoted to Assistant News Director and Lead Anchor. From 2015 to 2017 she served as Public Relations and Promotions Manager, for the Hotel Nikko Guam handling local radio and advertorial promotions, as well as produced and directed tv commercials for the hotel. Prior to this she worked with KUAM for three years as a reporter and segment host. She began her journalism career in 2012, working with Glimpses of Guam contributing to the Guam Business Magazine, R&R magazine, MDM magazine and the Marianas Business Journal.