Part of becoming a Blandin Broadband Community (BBC), is the opportunity to show off what you’ve been doing related to broadband in your community. It was great to hear from folks in Aitkin today.
Like all of the latest BBCs, COVID played a big role in both preparing the community for the pandemic quarantine and stopped projects in their tracks. In Aitkin we heard a lot about healthcare. Turns out they were able to serve 900 patients online in the first few weeks of the quarantine because they were prepared – but also because policy, especially around reimbursement made it financially possible. In fact, the health care folks were somehow able to expedite a plan scheduled really through the end of the year to deploy measures in weeks. Wow!
There were also some projects like the fancy new super-efficient conference room at the Birch Street Center where at first were put on hold as communities meetings were cancelled but now it back in play as they are planning to use it to stream Tai Chi classes for local seniors.
Aitkin is still working on getting broadband and it was good to hear about their short term plans to get it to people immediately but also long term goals to make sure they got what they needed.