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Senators Urge FCC to Pause Rural Health Program Changes

July 30, 2019, 7:06 PM

A bipartisan group of senators is urging the Federal Communications Commission to delay planned changes to a program that subsidizes rural health-care providers’ broadband internet connections, until it addresses concerns raised by medical practitioners and telecom providers.

An FCC order slated for an Aug. 1 vote would give the Universal Service Administrative Co. (USAC), an independent nonprofit designated by the FCC, more authority to determine the discounted rates that rural health-care providers can receive under the Rural Health Care Program, among other changes.

Thirteen senators, in a July 30 letter to Chairman Ajit Pai, said the proposal fails to address ...