“Under strong economic conditions, we will continue to support our island’s hospital by funding necessary equipment, expanded services, supporting Medicaid, and stabilizing our medical referral program. As we continue our response against COVID-19, we will continue our efforts to protect the safety and health of our people.”
– Governor Ralph DLG. Torres
Despite our differences as a community, everyone in the Marianas shares in the belief that the role of our government is to promote opportunities and protect the safety and well-being of our residents. This is true in how we work to improve our islands’ healthcare system.
The health of our residents drives the health of the Marianas and its economy, and therefore the Torres-Palacios administration considers it a priority. Under the leadership of Governor Torres, in close collaboration with Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation Chief Executive Officer Esther L. Muña, the CNMI Government intends to look to the future to ensure that we have an efficient and effective healthcare in the Marianas.
In 2018, Governor Torres renewed the CNMI’s goal to create a healthier community by launching strategic steps to tackle the issue of non-communicable diseases. According to the 2016 CNMI NCD Hybrid Survey, two-thirds of the CNMI adult population are overweight or obese. One out of five adults are estimated to have high cholesterol, and almost 20% of adults in the CNMI have diabetes.
Governor Torres and CEO Muña brought together government departments, business leaders, and nonprofit organizations to take action on this NCD problem together.
Governor Torres also led efforts to establish the first recovery and rehabilitation center for drug and substance abuse in the CNMI.
Through the Substance Abuse, Addiction, and Rehabilitation Program, the CNMI Drug Court, and community advocates who combine their passion and skills, the CNMI is coming together to assist
our loved ones make it through the difficulties of addiction, pain, and suffering.
As the CNMI continues its response to the COVID-19 global pandemic, the Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force and CHCC will continue to work hard to protect the health and well-being of everyone in the Marianas. Through proper planning, early surveillance, and social distancing, the CNMI has been able to keep its infection rate low.
Social distancing has been globally recognized as the most important factor in stopping the spread of COVID-19 in countries, states, and territories around the world. The Governor, his Task Force, and CHCC will continue to take proactive steps to keep this curve flat and protect the health and safety of CNMI residents.
Because of the work that residents in the CNMI have done together, our curve remains flat, and we don’t see sharp increases in confirmed cases, unlike other areas around the region and in the US. Businesses around the CNMI have also been very strong partners and are commended for their cooperation and commitment to protecting lives.
With community-based testing set to begin soon and with the enforcement of ongoing social distancing directives, the Governor believes that protecting the Marianas now will save countless lives in the long-run, while ensuring that the CNMI economy returns to normalcy as quickly and safely as possible.