Could emergency coronavirus preparedness funding boost telehealth?

The Brainerd Dispatch reports

Minnesota Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith voted to secure $8.3 billion in emergency funding for coronavirus preparedness and response efforts, including support for state and local health agencies, vaccine and treatment development, and low-interest loans for small businesses affected by the outbreak.

Included in the bill was an additional $500 million to expand telehealth services for seniors in small towns and rural areas who receive Medicare benefits. The emergency funding also includes at least $40 million for tribal health entities to ensure tribal communities have the resources needed to respond to the virus outbreak.

According to a news release, the state of Minnesota is expected to receive at least $10 million as part of this emergency funding.

On a related note, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota announced coverage updates on Friday afternoon in an effort to combat the spread and impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Part of their plan is to expand access to telehealth and nurse/provider hotlines.

This entry was posted in Healthcare, MN by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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