FCC Creates Healthcare Connect Fund To Expand Health Care Provider Access to Broadband In Rural Areas
The Federal Communications Commission recently released a lengthy Report and Order establishing a new Healthcare Connect Fund. The Fund is intended to "expand health care provider access to broadband, especially in rural areas, and encourage the creation of state and regional broadband health care networks." The FCC estimates that the Fund could "cut the cost of robust broadband health care networks in half, through group purchases by consortia and other efficiencies." The FCC expects to begin accepting applications from new applicants for support under the Fund beginning late summer of 2013, with applicants eligible to receive funds starting on January 1, 2014.