• Four Telehealth Networks in California, Iowa, Missouri and New York Seek Bidders for Rural Health Care Pilot Project
  • July 21, 2009 | Authors: Jennifer L. Richter; Jennifer A. Cetta; Carly T. Didden; Nancy A. Murray
  • Law Firm: Patton Boggs LLP - Washington Office
  • Four participants in the FCC’s $417 million Rural Health Care Pilot Program recently announced their intent to consider bidders to help deploy broadband telehealth networks. The California Telehealth Network Consortium and the University of California (UC) issued a request for proposals (RFP) on July 1st to obtain a comprehensive set of outsourced telecommunications and network services to serve 300 healthcare providers in the state. The consortium is seeking interoperable, secure, reliable and cost effective IP-routed WAN to interconnect healthcare providers. The WAN would be dedicated to supporting peer-to-peer healthcare-related communications. This network, in turn, would connect to or directly peer with several regional, statewide and national networks, thereby participating in a “network of networks” that supports enhanced telehealth services, including telemedicine. The first allowable contract date is July 29, 2009.

    In another Rural Health Care Pilot Project, the Iowa Rural Health Telecommunications Program and the Iowa Hospital Association (IHA) issued an RFP on July 8th seeking to connect various Iowa hospitals to the Iowa Communications Network using newly constructed or existing fiber optic cable facilities to serve Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. The first allowable contract date is August 5, 2009.

    A third consortium in Missouri, Pathways Community Behavioral Healthcare, Inc., issued a July 10th RFP seeking to establish an enhanced IT network for the delivery of mental health services via telemedicine in rural areas and to connect 19 Pathways sites to the corporate data center in Clinton, Missouri. The first allowable contract date is August 7, 2009.

    Finally, in New York, the Western New York Rural Health Education Center issued an RFP on July 2nd to provide an interconnected broadband wide area network to link a consortium of hospitals in rural, medically underserved and urban areas of Western New York to increase utilization healthcare information services and technologies among public and non-profit healthcare providers. The first allowable contract date is July 30, 2009.