22 Mar 2010

American Samoa's Governor vetoes use of funds in US to fund off- shore medical treatment

5:12 am on 22 March 2010

American Samoa's Governor, Togiola Tulafono, has vetoed a bill proposing the appropriation of 3 million US dollars for the off island medical referral programme.

The money was to come from the American Samoa Government's insurance proceeds account kept in New York

The governor said that funds in this account are needed to meet the requirement for a 10 percent match for federal assistance for earthquake and tsunami recovery efforts.

The US government through the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other federal agencies is to give 80 million dollars.

Governor Togiola said he is willing to work with the Legislature to seek other ways to fund the sending of patients overseas for treatment.

The LBJ Hospital stopped sending patients off island at the end of 2008 because of lack of funding.