Montour County-based Geisinger was awarded $978,000 from the Federal Communications Commission to upgrade the system’s telehealth services.
Geisinger, which operates Geisinger St. Luke’s Hospital in Schuylkill County, will use the money to buy telemedicine carts, tablet computers and other equipment such as hand-held cameras and stethoscopes.
Telehealth visits have skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic, with providers conducting twice as many visits daily as the system’s monthly total, according to a written statement.
“Telehealth technology has allowed Geisinger providers to connect with patients while minimizing physical contact during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said David Fletcher, associate vice president for telehealth at Geisinger. “This ensures that our patients can maintain routine healthcare appointments, manage chronic conditions, and stay healthier overall even while staying at home.”
Geisinger is one of 514 organizations allocated money through the FCC’s COVID-19 Telehealth program, which has already awarded $189.27 million to health care providers across the country.
The FCC also awarded more than $499,000 to Lehigh Valley Health Network in Allentown, which is set to use the funds for videoconferencing equipment, software, tablets and network upgrades.