This funding record is inactive. Please see the program website or contact the program sponsor to determine if this program is currently accepting applications or will open again in the future.

The Rural Health Care Program

Link

https://www.usac.org/rural-health-care/

Additional Links

Rural Health Care Program

Deadline

Application Deadline: Jun 30, 2020

Sponsoring Organization

Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC)

Purpose

Provides funding to eligible healthcare providers in rural areas for telecommunications and broadband services necessary for the provision of healthcare.

The Rural Health Care (RHC) Program consists of the:

  • Healthcare Connect Fund (HCF) Program
  • Telecommunications (Telecom) Program

The HCF program offers a 65% discount on the cost of an array of advanced telecommunications and information services and equipment to eligible rural healthcare providers and consortia.

The Telecom program subsidizes the difference between urban and rural rates for telecommunications services to eligible rural healthcare providers.

Further details and information regarding services eligible for RHC program support can be found in the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Healthcare Connect Fund Order.

FCC Rural Health Care Program frequently asked questions

Amount of Funding

Estimated total Rural Health Care Program funding: $802,740,000
Funding amounts for subsequent funding years will be adjusted for inflation.

Applicants must provide matching funds for a portion of the project. For HCF award recipients, an award may not exceed 65% of the total project costs. For more information on matching requirements and funding, see the FCC Healthcare Connect Fund Order.

Who Can Apply

Eligible HCF program applicants can be individual healthcare providers (HCPs)or a consortia of HCPs.

The three initial criteria a HCP or consortium member must meet to be considered eligible for the HCF program include:

  1. Being a public or nonprofit entity
  2. HCP must be located in a rural location as defined by the FCC. To determine the rurality of a location, use the Eligible Rural Areas search tool.
  3. HCP must be one of the following types of entities:
    • Post-secondary educational institution offering healthcare instruction, such as teaching hospitals or medical schools
    • Community health center or health center providing healthcare to migrants
    • Local health department or agency
    • Community mental health center
    • A not-for-profit hospital
    • Rural Health Clinic (RHC)
    • Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF)

Both rural and non-rural entities may generally receive funding as members of a consortium if the consortium is comprised of a majority of rural sites, more than 50%, as of the filing date of the request for funding.

Service providers participating in the HCF program may be any provider of eligible equipment, facilities, or program services with a 498 ID.

Eligible Telecom program applicants are individual HCPs. The three initial criteria an HCP must meet to participate in the Telecom program include:

  1. Being a public or nonprofit entity
  2. HCP must be located in a rural location as defined by the FCC. To determine the rurality of a location use the Eligible Rural Areas search tool.
  3. HCP must be one of the following types of entities:
    • Post-secondary educational institution offering healthcare instruction, such as a teaching hospital or medical school
    • Community health center or health center providing healthcare to migrants
    • Local health department or agency
    • Community mental health center
    • A not-for-profit hospital
    • Rural Health Clinic (RHC)
    • Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF)

Service providers participating in the Telecom program may be any provider of eligible program services with a 498 ID.

Service providers looking to participate in the HCF or Telecom programs must follow the five step process detailed on the program website.

Geographic Coverage

Nationwide

What This Program Funds

Equipment • New Program • Operating Costs and Staffing

Application Process

Information on starting an application, completing the required forms, additional program guidance, and an overview of fiscal year (FY) 2020 funding is available online.

All applications, program forms, and supporting documentation must be submitted through the My Portal application management system.

Past webinar recordings and training videos
Healthcare Connect Fund applicant frequently asked questions
Telecommunications Program applicant frequently asked questions

Contact

For questions related to FCC universal service programs and policy:
Telecommunications Access Policy Division, FCC Wireline Competition Bureau
202-418-7400

For Rural Health Care Program questions:
800-453-1546
RHC-Assist@usac.org

Topics This Program Addresses

Healthcare Facilities • Infrastructure • Teleservices and Technology