CCMH receives Broadband Connection Grant

Posted September 13, 2012 at 9:56 am

Cedar County Memorial Hospital in El Dorado Springs is one of 11 Missouri hospitals to receive a grant for the MoBroadbandNow Initiative, a program established by Governor Jay Nixon in 2009 as a public-private initiative to expand and enhance broadband accessibility and adoption in homes, businesses, schools, health care facilities and public safety agencies.

Cedar County Memorial hospital requested and received $25,000 for new broadband connectivity to include a 1 drop 10 MB/SEC upload and download. This connectivity is projected to increase the speed by ten times of delivering radiology images from Cedar County Memorial Hospital to its off-site radiologist for interpretations. In addition, the connectivity upgrade will also enhance the off-site accessibility of the hospital’s electronic health record, add span band bandwidth to the Regional Health information Exchange, which is currently in development, and promote a future connection to the Missouri TeleHealth Network, potentially allowing Telehealth access to greater medical specialties.

Victor Shulte, Cedar County Memorial Information Technologist said, “We have not had sufficient broadband connectivity up to this point in time because this type of broadband connectivity is fairly new, having only been available to use for approximately 18 months, and it is quite expensive. The increased speed of broadband connectivity will benefit our providers, staff and patients in many ways, some of which we are yet to realize.”

Cedar County Memorial Hospital C.E.O. Jana Witt said, “Technology is part of everything we do in healthcare. We need to keep up or risk being left behind. I feel our hospital has done a very respectable job of keeping pace in its use of technology. We are very thankful to have received the grant, as it will give us an opportunity to explore new patient service opportunities as we plan for sustainability of the broadband connection beyond the 20-month grant cycle.”

The grant will be distributed in seven installments between Dec. 1, 2012, and July 31, 2014.

Gov. Nixon has set an ambitious goal of increasing broadband availability throughout the state from the initial level of 79 percent in 2009 to at least 95 percent by the end of 2014.