14 Dec 2005

LBJ Hospital in American Samoa cutting hours of some employees to meet costs target

3:28 pm on 14 December 2005

The LBJ Hospital in American Samoa has confirmed it will cut back hours of operation in non-essential areas to meet expenditure targets.

Its chief financial officer says the hospital wants to access a 10-million dollar government-funded line of credit and it must meet demands to cut costs without cutting services, in order to do so.

David Deprin says that's a real challenge.

"We have been doing this financial reforming for quite some years so it becomes harder to find the costs to save. One of things is we're going to decrease the hours of operation for some of the non-essential clinics. And in doing that we'll be cutting employees' pay cheques because they won't be working the full 40 hours."

David Deprin says the hours will be cut from areas like elective surgery.

The hospital has also raised fees for people utilising its services but there has been a outcry from some community sectors with Senate hearings on the issue.