20 Jun 2011

American Samoa governor critical of waiving doctor's exams

5:14 am on 20 June 2011

American Samoa's Governor, Togiola Tulafono, says he does not support a waiver of the US Medical Licensing Examination requirement for physicians.

He told his cabinet the public deserves highly qualified medical practitioners.

He said just like lawyers and engineers who have to meet certain requirements in their field, doctors must also meet licensing requirements.

The governor's comment is in response to a decision by the LBJ Hospital Authority to waive the Examination rule for five new physicians at the hospital.

The new doctors are filling shortages in the Emergency Clinic and Primary Care.

The head of LBJ, Mike Gerstenberger, has said using the examination significantly limits the hospital's ability to recruit physicians.