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Rural Health
Resources by Topic: Technology for health and human services

Draft 2020-2025 Federal Health IT Strategic Plan
A draft guide for federal health information technology (HIT) activities. Identifies current healthcare challenges and opportunities related to HIT. Explains how the federal government intends to use HIT to promote health; enhance care delivery; build a secure, data-driven system; and develop an interoperable HIT infrastructure. Includes discussion of rural needs and opportunities related to HIT. The public comment period on the draft ends on March 18, 2020.
Date: 01/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organizations: Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
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Using AI to Reach Rural Patients
Podcast focused on using artificial intelligence to identify and diagnose illnesses, injuries, and recommend treatment to improve access to primary care in areas isolated by distance, weather, or transportation. Features John Supplit, senior director of the AHA Rural Health Services. Part of AHA's Advancing Health Podcast Series.
Date: 01/2020
Type: Audio
Sponsoring organization: American Hospital Association
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Informal Caregiving and Technology in Rural America
Highlights the challenges caregivers face in rural communities. Discusses how technology can offer potential solutions and identifies barriers to those solutions, such as broadband connectivity. Features Avera Health's eCare Senior Care, which provides a range of technology-assisted care services for assisted living and senior housing programs, as well as long-term care facilities.
Author(s): Tami Lichtenberg
Citation: Rural Monitor
Date: 01/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Rural Health Information Hub
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Telehealth: An Opportunity for State and Territorial Health Agencies to Improve Access to Needed Health Services
Reports results from a 2019 telehealth capacity survey of state and territorial health agencies. Identifies strategies these agencies can take to advance state use of telehealth related to infrastructure, collaboration, and policy.
Author(s): Alexandra Kearly, Janet Oputa, Paris Harper-Hardy
Citation: Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, 26(1), 86-90
Date: 2020
Type: Document
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Demand for Broadband in Rural Areas: Implications for Universal Access
Reports on the characteristics of demand for fixed broadband among households and small businesses in rural areas and how they affect private sector infrastructure investments. Discusses the role of schools and libraries as providers of broadband service and training to rural residents, and how broadband enabled services, such as telemedicine, may encourage rural households and small businesses to adopt the technology. Highlights federal programs and policies that may increase or impede broadband demand, and offers options for the U.S. Congress to consider as it addresses rural broadband demand.
Date: 12/2019
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Congressional Research Service
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Intergovernmental Advisory Committee to the Federal Communications Commission Advisory Recommendation No: 2019-2 in the Matter of State, Local Tribal, and Territorial Regulatory and Other Barriers and Incentives to Telemedicine
Examines the technical infrastructure necessary for effective telemedicine delivery in state, territorial, tribal, and local (rural and urban) areas. Discusses the regulatory barriers including legislation, licensing, reimbursement, malpractice insurance, and privacy that obstruct its development and utilization, and offers recommendations addressing these barriers. Appendix A presents case studies of broadband and telehealth development in several states and territories.
Date: 11/2019
Type: Document
Sponsoring organizations: Federal Communications Commission, Intergovernmental Advisory Committee to the Federal Communications Commission
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Finalized CY 2020 Physician Fee Schedule
Fact sheet describing calendar year 2020 changes to Medicare's telehealth reimbursement policy as a part of the Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) final rule. Includes sections on opioid use disorder treatment services, care management services, chronic care remote physiologic monitoring services, and online digital evaluation service (E-visit).
Date: 11/2019
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Center for Connected Health Policy: The National Telehealth Policy Resource Center
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ARcare Uses Telehealth for Diabetes Education
Describes ways in which telehealth is used for education programs geared toward prediabetic and diabetic rural patients of ARcare, an Arkansas Federally Qualified Health Center comprising 44 family practice clinics.
Date: 11/2019
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Bureau of Primary Health Care
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Strategic Options for the Modernization of the Indian Health Service Health Information Technology: Final Report
Identifies recommended approaches and next steps for modernizing the Indian Health Service use of health information technology (HIT). Addresses the needs of both patients and the health workforce that will use the system, as well as governance and a variety of technological issues. Lists constraints to HIT modernization along with proposed mitigations for those constraints.
Additional links: Roadmap: Executive Summary
Date: 10/2019
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
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Telecommunications: FCC Should Take Additional Action to Manage Fraud Risks in Its Program to Support Broadband Service in High-Cost Areas
Examines the funding reforms and fraud controls implemented by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for small, rural telecommunications carriers, identified as "rate-of-return carriers". Includes recommendations to the FCC supporting fraud risk management, regular assessments, and newly designed strategies. Appendix I identifies key elements of a fraud-risk management assessment process.
Additional links: Full Report
Date: 10/2019
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Government Accountability Office
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