Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) today joined Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin, along with Congressmen Steny H. Hoyer and Anthony G. Brown (all D-Md.), to announce that Anne Arundel Medical Center (AAMC) will receive $664,606 from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to invest in video telehealth services as part of AAMC’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This federal funding will allow AAMC to deploy telehealth technology to diagnose and treat COVID-19 patients remotely, as well as monitor high-risk, non-COVID-19 patients who were discharged from hospitals. The video telehealth program will reach 11 medically underserved areas in Maryland.
“As COVID-19 cases continue to rise in Maryland, we must apply a comprehensive approach to fight the virus. A key element of this effort includes strengthening our state’s telehealth services, so that health care providers can continue to deliver care and help prevent the spread of the disease. For Marylanders living in underserved areas, patients with underlying health conditions or individuals with mild cases of COVID-19, these telehealth services offer a proven method to receive safe and effective care,” the lawmakers said. “Working together, we will continue supporting innovative ways to address this public health emergency and secure additional federal resources for Maryland’s hospitals and health care providers.”
“Telehealth has been an important part of our ability to care for the communities we serve at Luminis Health. It has allowed us to ensure that everyone is safe and able to adhere to social distancing while still getting the care that they need. This grant will allow us to take our virtual campus services even further, enabling us to reach underserved and vulnerable populations living on a fixed income. This grant provides them with the resources needed (smart phones, data) to access valuable telehealth services during this time of social distancing,” said Dave Lehr, Chief Information Officer for Luminis Health and Gretchen Mulvihill, Grants Manager for the Anne Arundel Medical Center Foundation.
Funding comes from the FCC’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program, which was established by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The COVID-19 Telehealth Program helps health care providers reach areas where it is difficult to provide traditional care – either due to distance or due to patient and provider safety. Patients requiring telehealth are typically low-income and based in rural areas. See here for more information about the program.