A Guam Business Magazine series that connects businesses to government agencies
Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services
- Phone: (671) 735-7173
- Website: https://dphss.guam.gov
- No. of staff: 480
- Governing legislation: 10 GCA, §29195
- Director: Linda Unpingco-Denorcey
“To assist the people of Guam in achieving and maintaining their highest levels of independence and self-sufficiency in health and social welfare,” according to the department.
Functions and services:
- “Dedicated to eliminating health disparities for all; customer-service oriented, professional and efficient government agency; and responsive to health and social needs in the community,” according to the department.
- Guam DPHSS has five divisions helping to carry out mission and purposes:
- General administration
- Public health
- Environmental health
- Public welfare
- Senior Citizens
Highlights and challenges:
- “DPHSS continues to receive support from the federal government partners such as the U.S. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Department of the Interior and FEMA.”
- “With limited staff resources in DPHSS, the department is receiving much needed help from other Government of Guam agencies to assist us in our efforts in contact tracing, surveillance, and follow-up phone calls (in terms of the COVID-19 outbreak.)”
- “On March 31, commercial testing through Diagnostic Laboratory Services became available. Private clinics have referred asymptomatic and mild cases to DLS. This increases the accountability and availability of testing. Additionally, with more testing capability, this assists in determining the incidence and prevalence rate of COVID-19 in Guam,” DPHSS told the magazine on April 14.
Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation, Division of Public Health Services
- Phone: (670) 236-8703
- Website: http://chcc.cnmi.mp/index.php/division-of-public-health
- No. of staff: 70
- Governing legislation: The Northern Marianas Islands government established the Department of Public Health and Environmental Services with Public Law 1-08 in 1978. In 2008, through Public Law 16-51, the Department of Public Health and Environmental Services was re-organized and commenced operations in late 2011 as the Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation, with the Division of Public Health Services.
- Director: Margarita Torres-Aldan
“To achieve optimal health and well-being for the people of the CNMI [Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands] through health promotion, health protection and prevention of diseases in close partnership with the community,” according to the division.
Functions and services
- The Division of Public Health Services is made-up of five bureaus with over 20 programs and services. The division serves Saipan, Rota and Tinian and is primarily funded by federal grants from the Department of Health & Human Services.
- The five bureaus in the division are:
- Maternal and Child Health Bureau
- Non-Communicable Disease Bureau
- Immunization Program
- Tuberculosis/Hansen’s Disease Program
- HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Prevention Program
Highlights and challenges
- On its web page, the division said, “In a time of limited resources and the inevitable realities of budget cuts due to sequestration and financial constraints, doing more with less and leveraging resources is no stranger to the staff and management of public health. In such a dire time, more so than ever, engaging the people of the commonwealth to join us in our mission to improve the health of our people is vital. As stated by Director Aldan, ‘We all play a part in improving the lives of our people and making public health everyone’s business is the ultimate goal.’”
- “The division continues to strive to mobilize community partnership and empower the community to choose health and empower that sense of ownership to improving the health of our people here in the Commonwealth. It is this change that the division strives for aside from the technical work in building and improving the public health system.”