Part 3: Addressing Barriers - Homelessness and Connectivity
Community Based Organizations can help connect homeless individuals with telemedicine services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Find out about a federal program to improve access to phone and internet services for low-income individuals. The third and final webinar in the telehealth webinar series was held on Wednesday, September 30, 2020.
Featured Speakers and Presentation Summaries
- Micah Caldwell, Special Counsel, Telecommunications Access Policy Division, Wireline Competition Bureau at FCC
- Stephen Butler, Senior Director, Lifeline Program at USAC
- Leah Sorini, Communications Specialist, Lifeline Program at USAC
FCC/USAC Presentation Summary:
The FCC and USAC will provide a brief overview of the FCC’s four Universal Service Fund programs, which USAC administers for the FCC. The majority of the presentation will focus on the Lifeline Program, which is a federal discount towards phone or Internet service for low-income individuals. Specifically, the presentation will discuss the Lifeline program’s application process, temporary program changes in response to COVID-19 to ensure those hardest hit by the pandemic receive access to connectivity services, and resources for applicants as well as consumer advocates supporting individuals throughout the application process. The presentation will also highlight any specific information for individuals experiencing homelessness.
FQHC/Healthcare for the Homeless Speaker:
- Andrew Grimm, MHA, MPH
Vice President of Integrated Health Services
Colorado Coalition for the Homeless
FQHC/Colorado Coalition or the Homeless Presentation Summary:
Colorado Coalition for the Homeless (CCH) is an FQHC, is among the unique few that are recipients funded to focus on Public Housing Primary Care and Health Care for the Homeless. CCH has 19 housing developments and properties across Denver with supportive, transitional, and permanent affordable housing. CCH currently utilizes a secure video conferencing system to provide psychiatric services to patients seeking care at some CCH locations. Telehealth is utilized at locations where scheduling a psychiatric provider is not feasible due to low patient demand, provider shortages, geographic barriers, and other factors. In 2018, CCH was awarded a 4-year HRSA Bureau of Health Workforce Nurse Education, Practice, Quality and Retention (NEPQR) Registered Nurses in Primary Care Training Program grant. One of the primary strategies CCH will utilize in the project is implementation of an enhanced RN-led, mobile telemedicine program that will increase the percentage of satellite site patients who access integrated health care services. Telemedicine visits will provide greater access to care, especially among vulnerable populations who will not visit integrated primary care service delivery sites due to co-occurring mental health diagnoses, substance use, physical disability, lack of education, and/or distance to care in rural communities. CCH will highlight these accomplishments and describe leveraging this work on address the needs of individuals experiencing homelessness during COVID-19.
This program is brought to you by the HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.