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Congressman Gene Green

Representing the 29th District of Texas

Congressman Gene Green Weathers The Storm Of Red Tape To Secure Emergency Hospital For Houston Area

September 26, 2005
Press Release
Houston, TX-Congressman Gene Green (D-Texas) today received confirmation from Dr. Persse, City of Houstons Emergency Management Medical Director, that a mobile military hospital will in fact be set up at Ellington field later on this evening.
During the preliminary meetings to secure the Texas coast from Hurricane Rita on Friday, September 26, 2005, Congressman Gene Green heard reports that hospitals in Houston were now full and were turning away emergency room patients.
Congressman Gene Green proceeded to contact the Department of Defense (DOD) to let them know that a request for medical bed assistance would be coming soon, a forewarning due to the fact that aid requests must come from the State. (Federal emergency aid requests must be initiated at the local level who then make the request to the State level, who then makes the request to the Federal level.)
We tracked the City and Countys request for medical assistance at the local, state, and federal level throughout the weekend, said Congressman Gene Green.  After several conflicting reports and delays, I am glad the request has finally been granted and this medical facility will open tomorrow. 
Since these medical assets were pre-positioned in Texas before the storm, it shouldnt take over 72 hours to get them up and running.  If Houston had taken a direct hit to our medical infrastructure like in Allison, the result of this red tape could have been very dangerous, continued Congressman Gene Green.
Congressman Gene Green worked closely with Dr. Persse, the City of Houstons Emergency Management Medical Director and Dr. Eduardo Sanchez, Texas Commissioner of Health to get the emergency facility set up in Houston.
Dr. Persse has indicated that the military medical unit will operate out of Ellington Field concluded Congressman Gene Green.  They hope to have it operational by this evening or shortly thereafter.  The materials are already positioned in Houston; they just have to assemble the necessary personnel.  I want to thank Dr. Persse and Dr. Sanchez for their role in keeping the lines of communications open even as blurry as they were.