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What is Telehealth

Telehealth is the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support long-distance clinical health care, patient and professional health-related education, public health and health administration.

Technologies used in telehealth typically are: videoconferencing, the Internet, store-and-forward imaging, streaming media, and terrestrial and wireless communications. While new applications are increasingly found for using these technologies, significant barriers remain to making these technologies an integral part of daily health care practice.

Telehealth at HRSA

HRSA works to increase and improve the use of telehealth to meet the needs of underserved people, including those living in rural and remote areas, those who are low-income and uninsured or enrolled in Medicaid.

HRSA promotes the use of telehealth technologies by:

  • Fostering partnerships within HRSA, and with other Federal agencies, states and private sector groups to create telehealth projects.
  • Administering telehealth grant programs.
  • Providing technical assistance.
  • Evaluating the use of telehealth technologies and programs.
  • Developing telehealth policy initiatives to improve access to quality health services.
  • Promoting knowledge exchange about "best telehealth practices."
Telehealth Grants

Telehealth Links

Universal Service for Rural Health Care Providers (Federal Communications Commission)

Distance Learning & Telemedicine Program (U.S. Department of Agriculture)

Innovation, Demand and Investment in Telehealth (Acrobat/pdf, U.S. Department of Commerce)

Technical Assistance Documents: A Guide to Getting Started in Telemedicine (HRSA grantee Web site)

American Telemedicine Association (not a U.S. Government Web site)

Telemedicine Information Exchange (not a U.S. Government Web site)