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Virginia Rural Health Telecommunications Consortium

Take the Survey!
We are encouraging all hospitals, FQHC, RHC, other clinics, SNFs, CSBs, and Schools of Nursing to complete the eligibility form so we can determine needs and gage interest in the consortium.

We encourage you to complete the survey even if you do not think you will join the consortium as VRHA will also use this information to compile a report for the Secretary of Technology.

Take the survey!

The Virginia Rural Health Association has been awarded a HRSA Rural Health Network Development Planning Grant to create a Rural Health Telecommunications Consortium for Virginia.  

The Virginia Rural Health Association (VRHA) will use the grant to support the creation of the Virginia Rural Health Telecommunications Consortium (VRHTC).  The consortium would draw down federal funds to improve health information technology applications in rural communities.  The Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) Rural Health Care Program (RHCP) fosters the development and growth of broadband healthcare networks.  Successfully applying for the RHCP would reduce prices for higher bandwidth and offer better connectivity for rural healthcare providers.  Filing for the RHCP as a consortium would allow for continuity within the application process; a consortium would encourage competitive bidding by telecommunications providers across the state, resulting in lower fees for the participating consortium members; consortia can access funds not available to individual participants in the RHCP, including upfront payments for equipment and healthcare provider constructed facilities, and funds for equipment necessary to manage a dedicated healthcare broadband network. Participating facilities can receive up to 65% off their telecommuncations services.

Watch the video!  
We recently gave a presentation regarding VRHTC.  It's a good starting point for information.
 
VRHA would utilize the funds to bring together Virginia’s rural hospitals and Rural Health Clinics and make the following determinations:

  • The Health Information Technology (HIT) needs of Virginia’s rural providers
  • The elements necessary to assure the sustainability and viability of a rural health telecommunications consortium in Virginia.
  • The technical assistance needs of Virginia’s rural providers to enable their participation in the RHCP.
Those determinations would be made through the following activities:
  • Conducting a HIT assessment to determine the needs of Virginia’s rural providers
  • Reviewing telecommunications consortium models in other states and receiving peer training on consortium management requirements
  • Determining the best consortium management model for a Virginia rural health telecommunications consortium
  • Submitting the appropriate paperwork to the RHCP to create a consortium and assisting potential consortium members with completing their applications.

Questions?

Contact Beth O'Connor (540-231-7923)


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