The FCC stopped accepting applications for funding from the COVID-19 Telehealth Program because the money’s running out.
As part of the CARES Act, Congress appropriated $200 million for the FCC to support health care providers’ use of telehealth services during the pandemic. Within three weeks of congressional passage, the Commission adopted new rules for the program, created the application process, opened the application window, and approved the first set of funding requests.
The FCC began accepting applications on April 13. It evaluated applications and distributed additional funding on a rolling basis. To date, the FCC’s COVID-19 Telehealth Program approved 444 funding applications in 46 states plus Washington, D.C. for a total of $157.64 million.
Based on the applications received to date, demand for funding exceeds available funds. As a result, the agency doesn’t want to impose burdens on health care providers who may prepare new applications that cannot be funded under the current appropriation.