Senate Passes Bill Expanding Healthcare in Rural Alaska

Today U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) voted in favor of the Expanding Capacity for Health Outcomes (ECHO) Act to support telemedicine programs that connect health providers with patients in rural communities. The bill passed in a vote of 97-0.

“The health and well-being of Alaskans is one of my top priorities, and I remain committed to ensuring Alaskans have access to quality healthcare. Utilizing technology and innovative delivery models to meet healthcare needs is imperative in rural states like Alaska,” said Senator Murkowski. “By passing this bill, we will expand healthcare treatment options to Alaskans no matter where they live.” 

This bill requires the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to analyze the use of technology-enabled collaborative learning and capacity building models to improve health outcomes. It is modeled after Project ECHO, an innovative continuing medical education model that uses interactive videoconferencing to link specialist teams with primary care providers in rural and underserved areas.

Related Issues: Health