VIDEO: 2 GMH Deaths That Prompted Governor to Impanel Board Are Under Review


Guam – The 2 incidents that led the Governor to impanel the GMH Board without Legislative approval Friday were the recent deaths of  2 people who had sought treatment at the hospital.

GMH Medical Director Dr. Larry Lizama could not discuss specifics of those deaths but he said reviews have been launched of the procedures that were followed and the actions that were taken in each case.

The reviews are being conducted by the Peer Review Committee.

One incident involved the death of  Bill Camacho who was President of the Guam National Tennis Federation and died of a heart attack, after being seen at the hospital.

GMH Medical Director Dr. Larry Lizama could not discuss which GMH Medical Personnel were involved in that incident.

The other incident involves an un-named woman who died after an operation. Anesthesiologist Ilya Averbuch “terminated his contract” with GMH following her death.

Dr. Lizama cautions that the woman who died, passed away after the operation, and other medical personnel were involved in the operation, besides Averbuch. It is premature, he said, to jump to any conclusions about Dr. Averbuch until the peer review process has been completed.

In addition, Dr. Lizama says that even though Dr. Averbuch is no longer employed by GMH, he still has medical privileges at the Hospital, which means he could still provide anesthesiological services at the Hospital, if called on to do so by a consulting doctor or patient.

Only the GMH Board has the power to award or withdraw medical privileges. Lizama says he does not have that authority.

That is one reason why Lizama says it is important to have a Board in place to oversee and act on recommendations of the Peer Review Committee. A Board needs to be in place said Lizama and he supports the Governor’s decision to use his organic authority to impanel that Board.