Guam - Hundreds came out for a ribbon cutting ceremony for a new expansion to the Southern Region Community Health Center in Inarajan this morning - among them a long line of dignitaries including Governor Eddie Calvo and Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Insular Affairs Tony Babauta. The completed project adds an additional 19,000 square feet to the now 34,000-square foot center.

Governor Calvo calls the facility a "diamond for the south", adding, "This goes to show what collaboration does you have the folks at Department of Public Health led by Linda Denorcey and the community health centers coming up with idea and the you have collaboration. When I was Ways and Means chairman, we came up with local funding for it they work with their federal partners to find funding in fact five different funding sources."

Including the grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and the Department of the Interior, the total cost of the center is $8 million. Denorcey, the Community Health Center's executive director, says they have added six exam rooms, three isolation rooms, one treatment room and the expanded pharmaceutical, laboratory and medical records areas. "It feels so good to see it come to fruition and I am very happy I was part of the whole planning and steering all the staff," she said.

Inarajan resident Ben Meno shows a healthy appreciation of the new addition to his village. "It's wonderful, wonderful, awesome. I thank Linda, the board of directors, GHURA, everyone involved to make this thing possible. It's wonderful."

And for Calvo, the growing health care facilities on Guam are a part of the larger picture for the future of healthcare in the territory. "We have to think big. We have to not be held back by any preconceived notions, we can have superior quality healthcare on this island," he said.

According to Denorcey, the center services an average 60 to 65 people per day.