High Speed, Secured Broadband Networks Integral Component to Telehealth Systems, Healthcare Delivery
TeleQuality’s Natalie Verette Discusses Broadband Funding for Health Care Providers at Illinois Rural Health Conference
Champaign, IL (August 11, 2017) ) – “Telehealth and 21st century healthcare technology solutions can significantly increase access while lowering the cost of healthcare across the country, but only if their underlying broadband networks are well-equipped, high speed, robust, and secured,” said Natalie Verette, Director of Sales at San Antonio-based TeleQuality Communications, Inc. and its Rural Health Telecom℠ division, to healthcare providers, academics, health professionals, regulators and legislators yesterday at the 28th Annual Illinois Rural Health Association’s Educational Conference in Champaign, IL.
Under the conference theme of “Helping Our Communities Stay Healthy and Prepared”, Verette discussed how healthcare providers can use TeleQuality’s “Telehealth Framework” to bring telemedicine solutions to their communities that can produce better health outcomes. The framework outlines the three critical components needed to achieve a successful telehealth network: telecommunications services infrastructure, IT and medical tools, and clinical services.
“Our healthcare system and solutions demand high-speed broadband and it has become one of the single most important resources required for successful healthcare delivery in this day and age,” Verette said. “From engaging patient portals and electronic health records to telehealth solutions including teleconferencing and remote patient monitoring, high speed broadband is the bloodline giving sustainable life to all these interconnected systems and networks.”
Verette highlighted the major hurdle health care providers face, especially in an era of decreasing reimbursement rates, is the astronomical cost broadband networks can incur in remote or rural areas where the number of broadband providers and delivery modalities can be limited.
“With 81 rural hospitals closures across the country since 2010 and 673 more hospitals identified by the National Rural Health Association as vulnerable, it is imperative the health care industry takes a bold step towards recognizing the role broadband and telehealth can play in saving rural health care, Verette said. “Our rural health care facilities can achieve the same broadband speeds and network costs as urban facilities with the right funding strategy.”
She discussed one mechanism healthcare facilities can use to receive funding for telecommunications network upgrades is the Universal Service Fund’s (USF) Rural Health Care (RHC) program. The program is solely dedicated to providing $400 million annually to ensure rural health care providers can obtain telecom and Internet services at rates comparable to their urban counterparts.
“While the program is seeing an unprecedented level of participation in recent years, it is an indispensable opportunity and resource for these facilities to upgrade their networks to be equipped for whichever health IT solutions work for their specific patient population and business needs.”
About TeleQuality Communications, Inc.
TeleQuality Communications Inc. (TQCI) is a leading provider of quality telecommunications and network connectivity products and services to rural healthcare facilities. Since 1999, TQCI and its division, Rural Health Telecom℠, have been designing and supplying organizations with cost-effective, custom network solutions to connect multiple business locations to each other, business partners and the internet. TeleQuality’s technology solutions enable healthcare providers to take advantage of emerging healthcare technologies that increase access and lower the cost of healthcare. For more information, please visit www.telequality.com.