Spectrum Health Lakeland TeleHealth Gets $351K Boost From FCC

Have you Face-Timed with your Doctor, or visited him or her in a Zoom call? If you have, you’re in good company, and you can likely expect more of the same in the coming months and years in the “next normal.”

Congressman Fred Upton is announcing today that the Federal Communications Commission’s Wireline Competition Bureau will be awarding Spectrum Health Lakeland with more than $350,000 for telehealth considerations thanks to the CARES Act.

Upton says today that a grant of $351,175 is headed Lakeland’s way to support telehealth services, including telemedicine carts, tablets, telehealth and remote monitoring equipment, and telehealth software licenses, while expanding the telehealth infrastructure to allow all 350 health care providers in the system to see patients virtually.

The funding was made available through the CARES Act, which Upton voted for and the U.S. House passed with broad bipartisan support back in March.

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The Congressman says, “We have learned many valuable lessons during the COVID-19 crisis, including the importance of telehealth as we aim to protect both patients and health care workers,” adding, “To expand access to telehealth services, we know we need to expand access to broadband services, too. That’s why Rep. Clyburn and I have introduced a bipartisan bill that will bring more high-speed internet to more Michiganders, investing $100 million a year for the next ten years in our state. The bottom line is providers, staff, and patients need to have access to broadband. Our bill will do just that.”

Dr. Loren Hamel, President of Spectrum Health Lakeland says, “We are so grateful for Congressman Upton’s efforts and the CARES Act funding for expanding telehealth in Michigan’s Great Southwest,” and adds, “The grant will help us expand access, improve the virtual care experience, and keep patients and their providers even safer.”

In total, today the FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau approved an additional 53 funding applications for the COVID-19 Telehealth Program across the country. To date, the FCC’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program, which was authorized by the CARES Act, has approved funding for 238 health care providers in 41 states plus Washington, D.C. for a total of $84.96 million in funding.

For more information on the COVID-19 Telehealth Program grants, click the link below: