Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grant Open for Hospitals and Education Systems

Baker Donelson

Baker Donelson

A grant funding opportunity has opened for both for-profit and non-profit rural hospitals and education systems in the purchasing of telecommunication equipment to further advance distance learning and telemedicine. This opportunity has $44.5 million available with individual grant funding ranging from $50,000 to $1 million.

On April 5, 2021, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the window for this year's distance learning and telemedicine grant (DLT) has opened with an application due date of June 4, 2021. The USDA intends to make $44.5 million available with $10.2 million to be focused on projects that provide substance use disorder treatment services in local areas. Applicants are required to provide a minimum 15 percent match and spend down the award over three years.

Funding through the USDA DLT grant program may be used for the following eligible capital assets:

  • Computer hardware and software
  • Site licenses and maintenance contracts
  • Extended warranties (up to three years)
  • Audio and video equipment
  • Computer network components
  • Telecommunications terminal equipment
  • Data terminal equipment
  • Interactive audio/video equipment
  • Inside wiring
  • Broadband facilities, if owned by the applicant (limited to 20 percent of grant)

The application must demonstrate that the predominant purpose (50 percent or more of use) of every line item in the grant and match budget meets the DLT Grant definition of distance learning or telemedicine. Proposed projects will be evaluated based on USDA criteria measuring rurality and economic needs of the areas to be served. Additional consideration is given to projects focusing on substance abuse treatment for rural communities. 

Click here for a summary of the grant application.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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