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Colorado, New Mexico Senators Push for Rural Hospital Broadband Connectivity

Sean MacEntee
Creative Commons

A group of 31 U.S. senators, including Colorado’s Michael Bennet and New Mexico’s two senators, is pushing for more funding to help improve rural health care. In a letter to the Federal Communications Commission, they called for strengthening the Rural Health Care Program. The program helps ensure affordable telecommunications services for rural health-care providers. But the program hasn’t had a spending increase in over 20 years. In 2016 the demand exceeded the cap for the first time and benefits were cut by 7.5 percent. The senators wrote that without more funding, applicants will face a “devastating cutback” of up to 26 percent and will find it harder to engage in “life-saving telemedicine.”

Gail Binkly is a career journalist who has worked for the Colorado Springs Gazette and Cortez Journal. She is currently a freelance writer as well as the editor of the Four Corners Free Press, based in Cortez.
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