The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Wireline Competition Bureau announced on Friday that it would start accepting applications for the $200 million coronavirus telehealth program on Monday.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement on Friday:
The FCC is moving quickly to distribute this funding to help health care providers and patients across the country during the coronavirus pandemic. Given the importance of social distancing, telehealth is more important than ever, so we are pleased to do our part to help healthcare providers purchase telecommunications, broadband connectivity, and devices necessary for providing connected care.
The FCC program will provide $200 million to help healthcare providers and patients connect over telehealth platforms, as stipulated by the CARES Act.
Clint Phillips, the CEO of telehealth company Medici, said on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Saturday in March that President Donald Trump’s expansion of telehealth has given 100 million Americans access to virtual care.
Phillips told Breitbart News Saturday host Matthew Boyle that this is “a big game-changer that the Trump administration has put forward, which is just huge for healthcare innovation, for people getting care.”
“Over 100 million people have access to virtual care because of what the White House and the Trump administration have put out. Doctors can get paid for virtual care for Medicare,” he added.
“The last few weeks have been incredible because of the changes to the law because of coronavirus that has led virtual care to just explode,” he said.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma told SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Daily host Alex Marlow recently that the telehealth reform expands access to health care and helps prevent the spread of the coronavirus:
It is rapidly expanding across the country under the president’s leadership. One of the things that we know right now is that it’s better for people to stay at home. Those are the recommendations the president and the vice president have put out, 15 days to slow the spread. We’ve said very clearly to individuals, especially those that are elderly with underlying health conditions, that you need to stay home. And so that’s why we’re using telehealth and promoting telehealth because we know that people still need health care.
“It may be completely unrelated to the coronavirus. You may have heart disease and diabetes. It allows people to communicate with their doctors from the safety of their own home, which is so important,” Verma added.