SHLB Coalition Statement on FCC Decision to Fund FY2018 Rural Health Care Applicants May 20, 2019
For Immediate Release
Washington, D.C. (May 20, 2019) - Today the Federal Communications Commission issued an Order directing the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) to fully fund all eligible Rural Health Care (RHC) applications for the 2018 funding year. Thousands of rural hospitals, health clinics and other providers depend upon the RHC program to obtain the affordable broadband they need to treat patients and provide telemedicine services.
John Windhausen Jr., executive director of the Schools, Health and Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, made the following statement:
"The SHLB Coalition is pleased that the FCC has decided to fully fund FY 2018 applications for RHC funding. We also appreciate the recognition that multi-year contracts approved for year one are given ‘evergreen’ status in future years so that they do not have to go through the competitive bidding process again. Unfortunately, the extension of the filing window is extremely limited and should have been extended to all RHC participants because of the excessive delays in funding. We hope that the FCC continues to work on completing the broader RHC rulemaking proceeding by the target date of June 30, 2019."
The SHLB Coalition is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) advocacy organization that supports open, affordable, high-quality broadband connections for anchor institutions and their surrounding communities. The SHLB Coalition is based in Washington, D.C. and has a diverse membership of commercial and non-commercial organizations from across the United States. To learn more, visit www.shlb.org.