The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) awarded Conway Medical Center (CMC) $1,018,448.75 in Connected Care Pilot Program support to provide patient-based video visits, imaging diagnostics, and remote treatment services. These services will be used by low-income patients suffering from chronic or long-term conditions. CMC’s pilot project will serve an estimated 2,000 patients in the Conway area, 18% of whom are low-income. CMC was selected because of its plan to expand telehealth access to patients residing in rural and underserved areas.
The Connected Care Pilot Program will make available up to $100 million from the Universal Service Fund over a three-year period for selected pilot projects to help defray the costs of providing certain telehealth services for eligible health care providers, with an emphasis on providing connected care services to low-income and veteran patients. CMC was selected during the third set of funding announcements, and this is the second award CMC has received from the FCC to support telehealth use and expansion.
“As we have seen over the past year and a half during the pandemic, access to convenient healthcare services through telehealth has become especially important,” said CMC President and CEO Bret Barr. “Conway Medical Center has always been on the forefront of medical advancements and treatment options. Expanding telehealth services is one more way to help our patients live happier healthier lives.”
Among other benefits, connected care services, delivered via a broadband internet access connection directly to the patient’s home or mobile location, also can help contain and treat health conditions during public health emergencies, such as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
CMC has begun the process of identifying the necessary systems for purchase, and plans are in place for installation and set-up. The project will continue through 2023.