The Federal Communications Commission's (FCC's) Rural Health Care Pilot program has helped health care providers establish broadband networks to improve health care quality and reduce health care costs in rural areas, according to a new report from FCC staff that looks at successes and challenges of funded projects. According to participants, the key features were the consortium approach, the inclusion of urban providers, the broad definition of eligible expenses, the use of multiyear commitments, the use of a flat-rate discount approach, and the size of the discount. Challenges included the exclusion of administrative expenses and the difficulty of predicting the long-term sustainability of the pilot projects.

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