HRSA’s April 27, 2011 Funding Opportunities Announcement (FOA) solicits applications for the “Rural Health Information Technology Network Development” (RHITND) program. One of the challenges rural providers face is being able to secure the capital needed to make the initial investment for the necessary hardware and software to successfully implement HIT and EHR systems.
A “Rural Health Network” is composed of multiple independent rural healthcare providers and possibly other community organizations and is defined as a formal organizational arrangement among at least three healthcare providers that are separately owned entities.
Rural health providers benefit by forming Rural Health Networks as they have proven to be one of the best strategies for maintaining limited rural health resources when individuals in the community are faced with economic hardships and have decreased access to healthcare services. The HRSA funding will help networks expand their adoption of HIT and EHR and help providers in the network meet the meaningful use standards of EHR adoption.
Grant funds will support workforce analysis, EHR training, be used to purchase equipment, to identify and locate certified HIT equipment vendors, and to install broadband in rural areas.
This program will provide funding during FY 2011-2013. This is a one-time only funding opportunity and is based upon the availability of funds. About $12,000,000 is expected to be available annually to fund 40 awardees. The application deadline is May 27, 2011 with the start of the project expected to be September 1, 2011.
For more information, go to www.hrsa.gov or www.grants.gov.