Our View: Collaboration is Key for Government Agencies to Navigate Emergencies | Opinion

Over the past weekend, Guam Memorial Hospital saw an influx of pediatric admissions that brought the ward to capacity as the hospital needed to bring in more beds to accommodate patients.

The high volume of children admitted to hospitals was seen across the country, according to a press release issued by GMH, which attributed the increase to aggressive cases of metapneumo and human rhinoviruses – viral infections that can affect the severity of colds or seasonal illnesses. flu.

Unfortunately, those who have experienced COVID-19 continue to experience respiratory problems which can be further exacerbated by colds and flu, requiring emergency care and even hospitalization, especially for children. These underlying issues can affect disease severity, forcing us to be more vigilant and cautious this flu season.

Fortunately, the latest update from GMH regarding the pediatric department indicates that the number of patients is decreasing.

Additionally, nurses from the Department of Public Health and Human Services answered the call to provide additional support services to the children’s ward and hospital emergency room.

Acting Governor Josh Tenorio said in a public health news release, “It’s the kind of collaborative initiative and interagency leadership that has ensured the success of our health care response and recovery. health in recent years.”

We wholeheartedly agree: collaboration is key to helping our government agencies get through emergencies. The health issues we encounter are not unique to Guam. From the influx of children being admitted to hospital to the shortage of medical professionals, communities across the country – and the world – are grappling with a number of health issues. .

It is how our leaders and agencies commit to collaborating and supporting each other that can prevent a challenge from turning into a crisis that can ultimately affect our hospital’s mission to adequately care for patients and save lives.

Let’s join GMH and public health in keeping our children healthy by taking all the necessary precautions: washing hands, getting a flu shot, and following COVID-19 vaccination protocols.

Ashley C. Reynolds