Photo: Guam Gov. Felix P. Camacho

This summer, Guam's Acting Governor Michael W. Cruz, M.D. was joined by Dr. Nathaniel Berg in signing Public Law 29-92, the Telemedicine Act of 2008, which provides parameters for telemedicine consultation practices to protect Guam patients.

"Telemedicine allows our patients to have greater access to services and innovative technologies from some of the best medical facilities around the country," Cruz said. "This law provides the framework to ensure our people and physicians are protected as we take advantage of the life-saving technologies in the medical field that will greatly enhance cost savings for Guam's families."

The new law outlines numerous requirements that must be met by non-resident physicians before they are allowed to provide consultations to local doctors and patients. One of the guidelines ensures that non-resident licensed consulting physicians cannot provide final written or documented final medical opinions concerning the diagnosis or treatment of Guam patients.

"This is an example of what can happen when the medical and political communities collaborate," said Berg, who first demonstrated telemedicine on Guam. "I'm humbled to have been involved in this process."

"As a physician, I look forward to using the technology to help keep our patients on island when possible and having them better served when they do have to go off-island," Cruz said.