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FCC criticized for not spending on telemedicine

InformationWeek, July 20, 2011

The American Telemedicine Association has fired off a letter to the Federal Communications Commission urging that more money be spent on expanding telecommunications services, which will boost telemedicine projects at rural healthcare facilities. The letter, which was sent last week to FCC chairman Julius Genachowski, noted that 16 months had passed since the FCC adopted the National Broadband Plan, which included an entire chapter on the positive effects that broadband expansion can have on healthcare delivery. The letter also stated that eight months ago the U.S. Government Accountability Office issued a report sharply criticizing the Commission's management of the Rural Health Care Program. However, during this period the FCC has not committed enough funds or developed sound performance goals and measures that will help the FCC implement the National Broadband Plan's healthcare objectives, the ATA said.