CHOP Awarded Grant by FCC as Part of Agency’s Covid Telehealth Program

Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia was recently awarded $869,672 by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as part of the agency’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program. The grant will be used to fund three critical streams of work at CHOP: improving our telemedicine platform, expanding our capabilities in remote monitoring for medically-complex patients, and addressing digital health disparities for priority populations.

The COVID-19 pandemic uncovered barriers to the optimal use of telehealth services across CHOP’s health system. These barriers included the lack of access to devices or internet, variability in digital literacy between patient populations, and underlying health disparities such as language and social determinants of health. The funds will help CHOP to improve telehealth equity, accessibility, and usability for the 500,000 patients who seek care at CHOP annually, and the 2,400 providers who serve them. In addition, CHOP will utilize these funds to improve its existing telehealth capabilities with the Indian Health Service.

The FCC’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program supports the efforts of health care providers to continue serving their patients by providing reimbursement for telecommunications services, information services, and connected devices necessary to enable telehealth during the COVID-19 pandemic. Round 2 is a $249.95 million federal initiative that builds on the $200 million program established as part of the CARES Act.

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