USDA grants aim to expand health care to rural areas

Agriculture Department grants awarded for telemedicine, distance learning projects

Telemedicine and distance-learning programs will receive a boost from $34.9 million in grants awarded by the Agriculture Department for 111 projects in 35 states, USDA announced today.

The projects aim to increase educational opportunities and expand access to health care services in rural areas, according to department officials. The funding will be provided through USDA Rural Development's Distance Learning and Telemedicine Program.

“The Obama Administration is working to ensure that rural citizens have access to a full range of educational opportunities and access to quality medical care," Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said. "The funding we are announcing today will deliver these opportunities by expanding telecommunications, educational resources and computer networks throughout rural communities."

One project in Sioux Falls, S.D. received a $396,693 grant to provide video-conferencing and telemedicine service to connect 16 rural hospitals and clinics with regional medical facilities in Sioux Falls, Yankton and Aberdeen, for example.

The Association of Computer Technology Educators of Wells, Maine, will receive a $498,222 grant to purchase video conferencing equipment to link 22 schools in an eight-county area with four designated hub sites, including a library and a university, according to the USDA.

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

The Fed 100

Read the profiles of all this year's winners.

Featured

  • Shutterstock image (by wk1003mike): cloud system fracture.

    Does the IRS have a cloud strategy?

    Congress and watchdog agencies have dinged the IRS for lacking an enterprise cloud strategy seven years after it became the official policy of the U.S. government.

  • Shutterstock image: illuminated connections between devices.

    Who won what in EIS

    The General Services Administration posted detailed data on how the $50 billion Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions contract might be divvied up.

  • Wikimedia Image: U.S. Cyber Command logo.

    Trump elevates CyberCom to combatant command status

    The White House announced a long-planned move to elevate Cyber Command to the status of a full combatant command.

  • Photo credit: John Roman Images / Shutterstock.com

    Verizon plans FirstNet rival

    Verizon says it will carve a dedicated network out of its extensive national 4G LTE network for first responders, in competition with FirstNet.

  • AI concept art

    Can AI tools replace feds?

    The Heritage Foundation is recommending that hundreds of thousands of federal jobs be replaced by automation as part of a larger government reorganization strategy.

  • DOD Common Access Cards

    DOD pushes toward CAC replacement

    Defense officials hope the Common Access Card's days are numbered as they continue to test new identity management solutions.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group