LBJ board’s decision to appoint Dr. Shumway as CMO faces pushback
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Vice Chair of the hospital board Dr Jean Anderson has “pleaded” with LBJ personnel to “trust the board” citing that decisions made are for the best interest of medical care in the territory.
Dr Anderson was responding to questions over reports of an alleged petition by some senior LBJ doctors working to remove the current board, over the appointment of the new CMO Dr Joseph Shumway and also the resignation of two senior doctors last week.
“The decisions being made are in the best interest of LBJ and to fulfill the Board's mission to move LBJ forward and to improve the quality of care for our people.”
“The changes that are occurring are difficult for some at LBJ and I understand these individuals' concerns. And as we all know CHANGE is HARD.
“But all I can say is that I plead with those individuals to TRUST the Board and trust that the decisions being made are in the best interest of LBJ and to fulfill the Board's mission to move LBJ forward and to improve the quality of care for our people.
“One day we'll look back at this time and be reminded of the pain and struggle we all faced, as a people, but we will also be proud that we did what had to be done, even though it was HARD but it meant an improved LBJ and change that brought higher quality of care for our people.”
Dr Anderson is adamant that the LBJ Board is committed to the succession plan outlined with Dr Shumway who is looking forward to working with a local physician who will undergo necessary training, mentoring and development to serve as CMO following the completion of Dr. Shumway's contract.
“Please assure the people of American Samoa that the Board continues its mission to rebuild LBJ and improve quality of care for our people.
“We ask all our physicians, local and foreign and all our nurses to ban together and work towards this common mission and goal.”
Regarding the resignation of Dr Annie Fuivai and Dr Reese Tuato’o, Dr Anderson declined to comment.
“At this time, the Board is not at liberty to comment on any doctors who have chosen to resign as this is confidential employee information.
Meanwhile the chairman of the hospital board Dr. Malouamaua Tuiolosega shared with Samoa News correspondence outlining the new CMO’s plans for the hospital and the projects he was involved with in the past.
According to Dr Shumway’s email dated January 29, 2023 and addressed to Vice Chair of LBJ board, he has been working for the last several months trying to ensure continuity of the pilot missionary medical program from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“There has been concern that patients were having difficulty in receive high quality care due to many supply chain and other operational difficulties. I have successfully negotiated the continuation of that program for a prolonged period (years) so long as I can demonstrate improvements in staff and OR availability.”
According to Dr Shumway, prior to his engagement that medical program and the resources being used to support it were at high risk of being withdrawn.
“I have assurances from Salt Lake City and New Zealand that this program will continue and possibly expand.
“That promise is conditional on my presence… to ensure that those resources are effectively used and supported by LBJ.
“It is my hope to bring on additional physicians and nurses with skills in Family Practice and in ER medicine to Samoa in the coming year.
Read Dr. Shumway’s succession plan elsewhere in this issue.
DR SHUMWAY’s CREDENTIALS
BS, Zoology, Brigham Young University, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1983
Summa cum Laude, Salutatorian of College
University Scholar/Highest Honors
MD, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York, 1987
MPH, Health Administration Columbia University College of Public Health, New York, New York, 1988
Residency - Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of California Los Angeles, LosAngeles, California, 1989-1993
Fellowship — Maternal Fetal Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore Maryland, 1993-1995
Board Certified, Obstetrics and Gynecology, American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1997 to present.
Medical licensure in the USA, (Missouri, Illinois, New York, California and Maryland) and State of Qatar.