Pingree Announces $245k COVID-19 Telehealth Grant to Portland Community Health Center
Washington, May 28, 2020
Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) today announced Portland Community Health Center in Portland has been awarded $245,988 from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to support telehealth services for COVID-19 treatment. The funding comes from the FCC’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program and was authorized by the CARES Act.
“I’ve long known that telemedicine is essential for Mainers’ health, but this pandemic has only underscored just how important and life-saving this service can be,” said Pingree. “Telehealth services for patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 offer a way for health care workers to stay healthy while providing essential care to COVID-19 patients. This funding will help to slow the spread of coronavirus and ensure those who have contracted the virus are given proper care. I’m proud to see funding I advocated for in the CARES Act come to Maine; it will be transformative in the way we provide care during these unprecedented times.”
Portland Community Health Center will use this funding for a telehealth platform, computers, tablets, diagnostic equipment, mobile hotspots, and other telehealth equipment to monitor and provide care for patients in isolation who have tested positive for COVID-19. In addition, dedicated telehealth rooms for all patients without the ability to participate in a remote telehealth visit will be established, and the Health Center will deploy a portable teleclinic system to monitor the vitals of patients without a health care worker needing to physically be in the same room.
Pingree is a member of the Congressional Telehealth Caucus and has repeatedly called for broadened telehealth access to assist Mainers in rural areas. She supported telehealth provisions in the CARES Act, which was passed by Congress on March 27, and recently worked with the Maine congressional delegation to urge the VA to improve telehealth services.