With nearly 20,000 telehealth visits a day, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced they have seen an 800 percent surge in usage from before the COVID-19 crisis began. For the millions of veterans who live in rural America and drive an average of 25-50 miles to healthcare, this service lets them work their shift and see their doctor from the safety of their own home, without having to travel or miss work. The VA cares for nine million veterans, a third of them living in rural America, driving an average of 25-50 miles for healthcare.
In December 2018, the VA and T-Mobile (NASDAQ: TMUS) kicked off a partnership with 70,000 lines of T-Mobile wireless service to power the VA’s telehealth app and make healthcare more accessible to millions in more rural areas – with unlimited access to the telehealth app.
“Not only is telehealth important and, for many, preferred right now with the COVID-19 crisis, but for millions of veterans living in rural America, it’s sometimes the only option for regular healthcare,” said Mike Katz, EVP, T-Mobile for Business. “T-Mobile’s nationwide service keeps veterans in rural communities connected to their doctors and has the bandwidth to support this huge surge in telehealth visits.”
“Many veterans who live in rural areas sometimes have to drive great distances to see their VA providers, so telehealth services provide an important alternative option for the much-needed services veterans receive from the VA,” said Deborah Scher, Executive Advisor to the VA Secretary in the Secretary’s Center for Strategic Partnerships.
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