Illinois is expanding broadband access across the state, giving more residents’ access to telehealth providers. ERIC partnered with the Illinois Telehealth Initiative in prompting the Illinois governor’s office to pass the act, ensuring state agency resources will work with private-sector experts and legislators from around the state.
- On July 31, the Illinois Telehealth Initiative presented its concerns to the Pritzker Administration regarding the need for greater broadband access in rural areas and academic vicinities, in addition to the need for legislative advancements in telehealth. One of the highly important legislative actions is including vital health professionals within the Illinois Telehealth Act such as dentists, physical therapists, clinical social workers, speech-language pathologists, and more.
- Created through Public Act 100-833 and passed in June 2019, the governor’s office allocated $400 million to partnering with internet providers to build infrastructure expanding high-speed internet to the state of Illinois. Additionally, the act invests $20 million in the Illinois Century Network, a broadband network serving K-12 schools, higher education, public libraries, museums, state and local governments and the health care community.
- The plan, Rebuild Illinois Capital Plan, lays out steps to enact these and other telehealth improvements, under the direction of the 25-members Broadband Advisory Council. The council includes ERIC members such as Verizon, Comcast, and AT&T. By December 31, 2019, the council will deliver a report to the Governor and General Assembly with concrete recommendations for the statewide broadband expansion.
- ERIC has been actively engaged with the Illinois Telehealth Initiative the past two years.
- ERIC supports expansion of broadband access to compliment legislative innovations in the telehealth arena.
- ERIC has partnered with the Illinois Telehealth Initiative on upcoming events and is collaborating on other policy proposals.
2019 Telehealth Law Policy Forum:
ERIC is excited to be partnering with the Partnership For a Connected Illinois in order to promote education and strategic engagement in statewide broadband and telehealth access. If you are interested in learning more about the telehealth space, please consider attending the 2019 Telehealth Law Policy Forum on Thursday, September 5 in Chicago. The forum is a daylong event covering legal, policy, clinical, and technology experts discussing artificial intelligence and telehealth, remote patient monitoring, expansion of telehealth for Medicare Advantage plans, and more. Click here to learn more and RSVP.
Article by Carly Sternberg, Health Policy Associate