Guam still facing ER burden despite public clinics
HAGATNA, Guam (AP) -- Public health officials in Guam say a high number of people are still visiting the emergency room unnecessarily despite laws designed to drive them toward public health clinics.
Pacific Daily News reports about 70 percent of people who visit the emergency room each day aren't admitted to the hospital.
Guam Memorial Hospital sees about 150 people each day at its emergency room.
Director James Gillan of the Department of Public Health and Social Services says if laws were intended to take pressure off the ER, they didn't work.
A department report says many private clinics won't accept patients under Medicaid or the Medically Indigent Program. That means many people without private health insurance end up going to the emergency room.