5 Steps to Take Now: FCC Released 7 Day Application Window For $250M COVID-19 Telehealth Funding

On 4/1/2021 the FCC announced the final criteria and application guidelines for round 2 of funding. The application window will be open for just 7 days, beginning no later than 4/30. Additionally, the FCC will give no less than 14 days of notification prior to the opening date. Based upon those requirements, it is expected that the program will open between April 16th and 30th.
In March 2021, the FCC announced it would award $250M to increase the capacity and quality of care for telehealth services by covering the costs associated with acquisition and implementation of these services. Each awardee is eligible for up to $1M in funding. 

Here are 5 steps to take now

Complete submit the FCC form 460, and at least have an HCP (application) number assigned. Indicate on the application you are applying for the COVID-19 Telehealth Program. 

Register in the System Award Management program.

Establish an FCC Registration Number (FRN), which can be completed via CORES.

It is highly recommended to obtain a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) ID number and score via the HRSA site. The results from this score positively impacting the FCC eligibility rating defined below. 

Be prepared to supply detailed information on the telecommunication services, information systems, and devices (and their cost) that will be used to deliver care.

Applicant Eligibility

Eligibility of applicants will be based on the defined Rural Health Care (RHC) program statutory categories and includes public or not-for-profit hospitals, rural health clinics, community health centers, health centers serving migrants, community mental health centers, local health departments or agencies — and post-secondary educational institutions/teaching hospitals/medical schools. For-profit healthcare entities are ineligible to receive these funds. 
Applicant Evaluation Metrics
Once the application window of 7 days closes, the FCC will evaluate and prioritize applicants considering:

Hardest Hit Area: Location of the applicant, with higher scores going to providers located within a county defined as a “sustained hotspot” or a “hotspot” 

Low-Income Area:  Total population of the provider’s service area falling below the federal poverty level (based on 2019 Census data) 

Round 1 Unfunded Applicants: Providers who applied in round 1 but did not receive funding

Tribal Communities: Providers who are physically located on tribal lands 

Community Access Hospitals: Federally recognized Community Access Hospitals 

Federally Qualified Health Centers Look-A–Like, or Disproportionate Share Hospital 

Healthcare provider shortage area: Scoring based on HRSA HPSA score (if scoring is complete) 

Round 2 new applicant: Providers who did not apply for funds in round 1 of the Program 

Rural County: Based on the county the health center is located  

Pivot Point Consulting Program Assistance
To support provider organizations seeking to participate in the FCC COVID-19 Telehealth Program funding, Pivot Point Consulting is offering pro bono advisory and regulatory insight on the program and upcoming application process. Use the form below to contact our telehealth experts directly.

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