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Today, the FCC posted the official vacancy announcement for a Director of Health Care Initiatives. In September, Chairman Genachowski announced that the FCC would soon undertake a search for a new position to coordinate the agency’s numerous health care technology related initiatives, in response to a recommendation by the mHealth Task Force

Filling this position is an important step in the FCC’s ongoing mission to expand access to health care applications through wired and wireless broadband.  The Director of Health Care Initiatives will lead the agency’s efforts in facilitating and promoting communications technologies and services that improve the quality of health care for all citizens and help reduce health care costs; facilitating the availability of medical devices that use spectrum; and ensuring hospitals and other health care facilities have required connectivity.

The Director of Health Care Initiatives will push forward on the many continuing health-related initiatives at the FCC, including:

  • Continued engagement with the health care and telecommunication community, including with the mHealth Task Force, the NIH mHealth Working Group, and our federal partners, including HHS, FDA, and NTIA.
  • Work with current FCC specialists on implementation of and outreach for the new Health Care Connect Fund, which will foster the creation and extension of broadband networks of health care providers throughout the country
  • Collaborate with FCC experts on continued innovation in spectrum policy, including across Medical Body Area Networks (MBANs) spectrum, Medical Micropower Networks (MMNs), Medical Device Radio Communications Service (MedRadio), and wireless medical device testing.
  • Continue implementation of the recommendations in the Health Care section of 2010 National Broadband Plan, which aims to maximize the impact of broadband and health information technology to transform health care delivery, including implementing the new Health Care Connect Fund, upgrading the Indian Health Services’ broadband network, creating economic incentives for broader health IT adoption and innovation, unlocking the power of health care data and advanced analytics, and modernizing rules to increase access to e-care.
  • Design and implement a new Pilot program to explore expanding broadband healthcare networks to skilled nursing facilities

Fulfilling an additional Task Force recommendation, the FCC is launching a new website fcc.gov/health to serve as a central repository for all the FCC’s health care-related work.  For the first time in one place, you will be able to find links and information to each of the FCC’s health programs, as well as instructions on how to submit comment and get involved with the FCC.  We hope this will be a valuable resource for industry, policymakers, and anyone who wants to learn more about our programs.

By recruiting a Director of Health Care Initiatives and launching the FCC Health website, we hope to accomplish even more, with greater coordination within the agency, more community engagement, and more efficient collaboration with our external partners.