California starts statewide telehealth network

Broadband network said to be largest statewide telehealth program

The California Telehealth Network, described as the largest statewide network of its kind, will link 800 public and private health care facilities in a partnership to offer patients medical care and emergency services.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and White House Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra joined with health care leaders in Sacramento, Calif., to announce the $30 million program on Aug. 17.

The network uses a secure broadband connection to allow medical professionals and patients to communicate verbally and share information in real time using digital tools such as video and diagnostic tools such as X-rays.


Related story:

VA sets the telehealth table


The network is being funded by a $22 million grant from the Federal Communications Commission with additional support from a statewide consortium of industry and philanthropic groups. The network is working with AT&T to connect the first 50 sites on the network over the next two months, according to a statement on the University of California’s Web site. The initial 50 sites will include urban and rural locations.

"California is always leading the way with the most innovative and new technology that is changing the future," Schwarzenegger said. "And what we are launching today is a new era for health care."

As part of the economic stimulus law of 2009, the Obama administration and Congress approved $7 billion for expanding broadband services in rural and underserved areas for the purpose of facilitating telehealth and other services. In addition, the FCC named the expansion of telehealth services as one of the goals in its National Broadband Plan.

Currently, the largest federal telehealth provider is the Veterans Affairs Department, which has a program that allows more than 35,000 veterans to monitor their chronic conditions and interact with a remote care coordinator from the comfort of their homes.

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

The Fed 100

Save the date for 28th annual Federal 100 Awards Gala.

Featured

  • computer network

    How Einstein changes the way government does business

    The Department of Commerce is revising its confidentiality agreement for statistical data survey respondents to reflect the fact that the Department of Homeland Security could see some of that data if it is captured by the Einstein system.

  • Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. Army photo by Monica King. Jan. 26, 2017.

    Mattis mulls consolidation in IT, cyber

    In a Feb. 17 memo, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told senior leadership to establish teams to look for duplication across the armed services in business operations, including in IT and cybersecurity.

  • Image from Shutterstock.com

    DHS vague on rules for election aid, say states

    State election officials had more questions than answers after a Department of Homeland Security presentation on the designation of election systems as critical U.S. infrastructure.

  • Org Chart Stock Art - Shutterstock

    How the hiring freeze targets millennials

    The government desperately needs younger talent to replace an aging workforce, and experts say that a freeze on hiring doesn't help.

  • Shutterstock image: healthcare digital interface.

    VA moves ahead with homegrown scheduling IT

    The Department of Veterans Affairs will test an internally developed scheduling module at primary care sites nationwide to see if it's ready to service the entire agency.

  • Shutterstock images (honglouwawa & 0beron): Bitcoin image overlay replaced with a dollar sign on a hardware circuit.

    MGT Act poised for a comeback

    After missing in the last Congress, drafters of a bill to encourage cloud adoption are looking for a new plan.

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