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Eligible Providers Can Now Apply for Telehealth Related Funding Through FCC COVID-19 Telehealth Funding Program

Apr.15.2020

On April 13, 2020, the Federal Communications Commission’s Wireline Competition Bureau began accepting applications for the COVID-19 Telehealth Program. The COVID-19 Telehealth Program will provide $200 million in funding to help health care providers furnish services to patients at their homes or mobile locations in response to COVID-19 pandemic. The Program does not anticipate awarding more than $1 million to any single applicant. Eligible providers include: (1) post-secondary educational institutions offering health care instruction, teaching hospitals, and medical schools; (2) community health centers or health centers providing health care to migrants; (3) local health departments or agencies; (4) community mental health centers; (5) not-for-profit hospitals; (6) rural health clinics; (7) skilled nursing facilities; or (8) consortia of health care providers consisting of one or more entities falling into the first seven categories. Note that large hospital systems are currently excluded from this list.

Providers may use the funding to defray the costs of providing connected care services including purchasing:

  • Telecommunications Services, including voice service for health care providers or their patients
  • Information Services, including
    • internet connectivity services for providers or patients
    • remote patient monitoring platforms and services
    • patient reported outcome platforms
    • store and forward services, such as asynchronous transfer of patient images and data for interpretation by a physician
    • platforms and services to provide synchronous video consultation
  • Connected Devices, including tablets, smart phones or connected devices, or telemedicine kiosks/carts for health care providers sites
    • Note: The Program will only fund devices that are themselves connected (e.g., pulse oximetry, blood pressure monitoring devices, etc.) and will not fund unconnected devices that patients can use at home and then manually report the results to medically professionals.

The Bureau will accept applications on a rolling basis and will select participants until all COVID-19 Telehealth Program funding has been committed or the COVID-19 pandemic has ended. Health care providers seeking to participate in the COVID-19 Telehealth Program must:

  1. Obtain an eligibility determination from the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) for each health care provider site that they include in the application. To do so, providers must file an FCC Form 460.
    • Applicants that do not yet have an eligibility determination from USAC can still file an application for the Program while the application is pending.
  2. Obtain an FCC Registration Number (FRN), a 10-digit number assigned to a business or individual registered with the FCC, through the CORES portal. Users will need to provider their taxpayer identification number to register.
  3. Register with System for Award Management, an application that collects business information about the federal government’s partners in support of federal awards, grants and electronic payment processes.
    • It may take up to 10 business days for registration to become active and an additional 24 hours before the registration information is available on other government systems.

Applications can be filed through a dedicated application portal on the COVID-19 Telehealth Program page at www.fcc.gov/covid19telehealth. Questions specific to the application process should be directed to EmergencyTelehealthSupport@fcc.gov.

For more information, please contact the professional(s) listed below, or your regular Crowell & Moring contact.

Jacinta Alves
Partner – Washington, D.C.
Phone: +1 202.624.2573
Email: jalves@crowell.com
Jodi G. Daniel
Partner – Washington, D.C.
Phone: +1 202.624.2908
Email: jdaniel@crowell.com
Roma Sharma
Counsel – Washington, D.C.
Phone: +1 202.624.2784
Email: rsharma@crowell.com
Stephanie D. Willis
Counsel – Washington, D.C.
Phone: +1 202.624.2721
Email: swillis@crowell.com
Shaina Vinayek
Associate – Washington, D.C.
Phone: +1 202.688.3444
Email: svinayek@crowell.com