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Helping Facilities Apply for $200M in Telehealth Funding

Helping Facilities Apply for $200M in Telehealth Funding

April 15, 2020

Tembo Health is partnering with nursing facilities to apply for funding for telehealth equipment through the FCC’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program. The COVID-19 Telehealth Program is a part of the March 2020 CARES Act in response to the public health emergency brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. This program is being managed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to distribute $200 million in funding for telemedicine equipment for eligible facilities to treat patients remotely throughout this national health emergency. [1]

Our team is here to help your facility through the application process. We have provided a brief explanation of the program below, and have compiled a list of eligible hardware from trusted vendors to apply for funding for connected devices and telecommunications equipment. Contact our team or email us at hello@tembo.health to get started.

Tembo Health’s comprehensive telehealth solutions

Now more than ever treatment in place is crucial to resident health. Tembo Health’s telemedicine platform connects residents with leading specialty clinicians, RN care management services, as well as their own primary care doctors. Our team of operators and clinicians are ready to start providing treatment in place at your facility, connecting residents with the care for chronic conditions they need. Tembo Health brings these services into the security of your facility, and reduces the risk of coronavirus transmission to staff and residents.  

Who is eligible to apply?

The COVID-19 Telehealth Program is limited to nonprofit and public eligible health care organizations, ranging from skilled nursing facilities to hospitals. Facilities in all geographies are eligible for funding, not just those located in rural areas. All applicants can determine their facilities eligibility by completing a form 460 on USAC’s My Portal page. Rural facilities that have already been determined eligible for the FCC’s Rural Health Care Programs in the past do not need to resubmit for eligibility.

The FCC will prioritize applications in part based on how high risk the patient population is (including whether or not the facility has or is willing to care for COVID-19 patients). Rural facilities, and regions that are historically underserved will receive priority as well. [2]

What services and equipment are eligible for funding?

The COVID-19 Telehealth Program will provide funding for telecommunications, information services, and connected devices necessary to provide telehealth to residents and patients. Funding will be provided to eligible facilities retroactively for all qualifying purchases made on or after March 13, 2020.  Funding will only be provided for connected devices (i.e. Bluetooth, Phone, and WiFi connectivity), and not for devices that report manually. The FCC lists examples of eligible devices as: tablets, smart phones, telemedicine carts, video conferencing equipment, blood pressure monitors, and pulse oximetry monitors.  Funding will not be provided for additional personnel, IT, administrative, or training costs; and these should not be listed in cost calculations when applying. Vendors of services and equipment are welcome to provide training and resources for eligible providers free of cost. [2]

How to get started

Online applications are live now on FCC’s website, and we have outlined steps your facility can take to expedite the application process. 

  1. Obtain an FCC Registration Number (FRN) from the Commission Registration System (CORES), as well as a CORES username and password at that link.  
  2. Register with the federal System for Award Management (SAM)
  3. File a Form 460 with Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC).
  4. Collaborate with Tembo Health to complete and submit an application.

Sources

  1. https://www.fcc.gov/covid-19-telehealth-program
  2. https://www.fcc.gov/covid-19-telehealth-program-frequently-asked-questions-faqs

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