WASHINGTON, DC (December 10, 2018): Health IT Now - a broad-based coalition of patient groups, provider organizations, employers, and payers supporting the use of data and health information technology to improve healthcare - presented its annual Health IT Pioneer award to Sen. John Thune (R-SD) for his leadership as the sponsor of the STREAMLINE Small Cell Deployment Act.
The award is Health IT Now's highest honor and recognizes legislators who have aggressively pushed for technology-enabled solutions to spur improvements in healthcare.
Senator Thune's bipartisan legislation, endorsed by Health IT Now last July, would advance the deployment of "small cells" - small wireless facilities that sit atop streetlights, poles, and buildings - which comprised 62 percent of all wireless deployments for the nation's largest wireless provider in 2017 and are central to the building of a seamless, nationwide 5G broadband network.
Implementation of 5G will mean improvements in real-time disease diagnosis, population analytics, patient outcomes, and remote access capabilities – all leading to more efficient, higher quality, technology-enabled care.
HITN Executive Director Joel White released the following statement congratulating Senator Thune:
"Senator Thune is at the forefront of efforts to bridge the digital divide in America by working to ensure that every American has access to 21st-century care. As Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, he recognizes the promise of 5G networks for expanding and improving telehealth services and other innovative models of care delivery," said HITN Executive Director Joel White. "His legislation makes certain that, when this technology arrives, we have the infrastructure to put it to use nationwide. This bipartisan solution would mean that more consumers can reap the benefits of our rapidly changing technology landscape, regardless of their zip code and, for that, Senator Thune is a true Health IT Pioneer. We are proud to present Senator Thune with this well-deserved honor and we look forward to the reintroduction and swift passage of his bill in the new Congress."
Other Health IT Pioneers for 2018 include Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Representatives Anne Kuster (D-NH), Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), and David Schweikert (R-AZ).
Health IT Now's Past Work on the STREAMLINE Small Cell Deployment Act: