16 Nov 2005

American Samoa Senate President says medical fee increases too harsh for low income earners

10:32 am on 16 November 2005

American Samoa's Senate President, Lolo Letalu Moliga has recommended to Governor Togiola Tulafono that he reconsider ways to raise revenues for the LBJ Hospital

Lolo says the recently announced increased fees may not be a problem to those with high incomes, but for those who do not have the money, the fees are a hardship.

The Senate President says 62% of residents are low income people who cannot afford the new fees.

Lolo says there are other ways to come up with the revenues needed by the hospital instead of placing a burden on the public.

He also says that up to now the House and Senate have never been informed by the Hospital about the rate increase.

His comments came in the opening of a special session of the Legislature which will review legislation to authorize a $10 million loan for the hospital.