AHA, Intel urge FCC to broaden rural telehealth pilot participation

From Healthcare Dive:

  • Stakeholders from the healthcare and technology sectors — including players like the American Hospital Association, the American Physical Therapy Association and Verizon — submitted comments to the Federal Communications Commission overwhelmingly supporting its rural telehealth pilot, with many advising broader eligibility requirements for healthcare providers. The comment period closed Thursday.
  • The AHA and the Connected Health Initiative (CHI), a stakeholder group composed primarily of tech companies, academics and providers, including Intel and the American Heart Association, told the FCC it should support the use of innovative technologies, end-user devices and software platforms in addition to broadband connectivity and network equipment to optimize care for rural patients. But other groups, like the American Physical Therapy Association, said end-user devices shouldn’t be included because they would drive up costs by encouraging purchases of a higher level of service or equipment than needed.
  • Verizon said the FCC should give support directly to healthcare providers instead of to service providers because that system would “require service providers to develop a new billing process for a temporary program with a handful of customers.”

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