PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-IL) toured OSF OnCall Care Hub in Peoria on Monday, touting the local impact of the recently-passed Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on rural broadband.
Illinois is set to receive $100 million to expand rural broadband infrastructure through the bipartisan legislation, signed into law on Nov. 15.
Colleen Reynolds, media relations coordinator at OSF HealthCare, said broadband is essential for reaching rural customers using telehealth.
“High speed internet for health care is not a luxury, it is a necessity, and if OSF HealthCare is trying to reach some of the patients in areas that are remote and rural, of which we have many, broadband access is absolutely critical,” she said.
Reynolds said the funding would also help OSF expand its OSF OnCall program, which allows providers to monitor patients in their homes.
“That’s going to be critical to helping OSF HealthCare deliver healthcare at home, where people want it, where they are comfortable receiving it, and when they can. That’s the best place for them to be to receive care,” she said.