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Primary Care iInitiative at CNMI hospital cuts long lines in ER

LBJ: Take a lesson

A new procedure to cut long waiting times at the Emergency Room of the only hospital in the Northern Mariana Islands is working.

The Primary Care Access Point procedure was introduced in November by the Commonwealth Health Center's emergency service director Dr Martin Rohringer.

Dr Rohringer says the ER has often struggled to serve large numbers of patients who find it a convenient place to seek care for minor illnesses like coughs and colds.

Our correspondent in the CNMI Mark Rabago says the new initiative means emergency cases are given priority.

"It has reduced the number of queues or lines or probably no lines at all at ER anymore because patient arrives, a triage nurse determines whether he or she needs to be seen at the ER or would be referred to another section of the hospital."

Mark Rabago says people prefer the hospital over local GPs because the Health Center accepts people with medicare and medicaid.



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