4th Quarter 2017

TeleQuality Communications

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Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

The FCC Proposes A Cap Increase on the Rural Health Care Program

The FCC has proposed increasing the $400 million cap on the Rural Health Care Program in its Promoting Telehealth in Rural America Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Order (NPRMO). The Order would pull unused funds from previous funding years forward to waive the $400 million funding cap for Funding Year 2017.

The NPRM also seeks comment on future mechanisms to increase the funding cap, eliminating abuse of funds, simplifying program participation and enhancing oversight. Read more on this critical Order now.



Happy Thanksgiving from TeleQuality!

From our TeleQuality family to yours, we hope all of our newsletter readers had a great Thanksgiving enjoying time with family and friends! We also extend best wishes for a festive upcoming holiday season filled with love, laughter and happiness!

Happy Thanksgiving!



Join Us for Our Webinar

Watch Our Recent Webinar!

TeleQuailty recently hosted a webinar with the Montana Hospital Association on Dec. 6th! We spoke about the three pillars needed for telehealth adoption, or what we at TeleQuality call "The Telehealth Framework." We also covered available funding opportunities, including the USF's Rural Health Care Program, so your organization can afford broadband upgrades needed for telehealth!

Here is our archived webinar should you wish to save it, view it or share it with your colleagues! Additionally, here is a quick overview of the entire presentation.

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On the Blog This Month: Municipal Broadband Networks

As commercial ISPs continue to struggle expanding into rural areas, municipal broadband network projects have been popping up all over the country in effort to fill the broadband gap, but are they the best solution?

Read our latest blog post, where we break down both sides of the issue so you can decide which side of the debate you fall under and if municipal broadband could potentially work for your community.

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Muni-Networks





Small Towns

Using Technology to Improve Rural Health Care

Harvard Business Review (10/18/17) - Allison Suttle

Amidst all of rural healthcare's unique challenges, how can technology be leveraged to improve its conditions? This article from Harvard Business Review dives deep into how technology is impacting small towns and communities across the country.



4 Actions the Trump Administration Will Take Now That Opioid Crisis is a National Public Health Emergency

Fierce Healthcare (10/27/17) - Ilene MacDonald

The Trump Administration recently declared the opioid crisis a national public health emergency, but what exact actions is the administration planning to do? Check out this article from Fierce Healthcare for more info.

Opioid Crisis



Excessive Spending

Meaningful Use, Regulatory Burden Costing Providers Billions

EHR Intelligence (10/26/17) - Kate Monica

AHA emphasized the need to eliminate Stage 3 Meaningful Use following a study showing excessive spending associated with federal reporting programs. Find out the details in this article now. 



The Fax of Life
It's 2017. Why does American medicine still run on fax machines?

Vox (10/31/17) - Sarah Kliff

In 2017, a significant sector of healthcare still relies on fax machines to transfer data between providers. Why does American medicine still run on fax machines? This in-depth feature from Vox explores why and how healthcare is stuck in the past. 

Fax Machines



Small Practices

Small Physician Practices Embrace Telemedicine

Fierce Healthcare (10/25/17) - Annette Boyle

When somebody mentions "telemedicine", we immediately think of large hospitals, health systems and institutions. But what about telemedicine use in small physician practices? Read how some small practices are embracing virtual healthcare and telemedicine in this feature now



Healthcare's New Rural Frontier 

Politico (4/12/17) - Anna Gorman

How an Idaho hospital that serves a region with more bears than people is helping forge the future of American medicine. Read the inspiring story now.

Data Breaches



Policy Updates

State Telehealth Policy Updates: Fall 2017

Center for Connected Health Policy

The Center for Connected Health Policy is out with its bi-annual update on state telemedicine laws and reimbursement policies. Two states - Maryland and Oklahoma - added payments for store-and-forward technology in their Medicaid programs since the last update in April. While Oklahoma also added payments for remote patient monitoring in Medicaid, the report strikes Hawaii and Kentucky from the list citing no evidence states implemented the reimbursement policies. Click here for access to the full report.



Telehealth Groups Urge Congress to Double Rural Broadband Funding 

mHealth Intelligence (11/2/17)- Eric Wicklund

In a letter to Congress, a coalition of healthcare providers and telehealth networks asks that Rural Health Care Program, the fund supporting rural broadband expansion for telehealth, be boosted from $400 million to $800 million. Read the full details in this article now.

Congress



Net Neutrality

FCC’s Pai Circulates Draft Order to Overturn Net Neutrality Rules

Fierce Telecom (11/21/17)- Sean Buckley

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s proposal to overturn the Title II classification for the current net neutrality rules during its upcoming Dec. 14 monthly meeting has incited renewed debate about how to regulate broadband and internet services. Read what each side is advocating in this Fierce Telecom article now.



Customer Announcements


Funding Deadlines


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