The U.S. Department of Agriculture has issued 31 grants worth more than $8.6 million to rural telemedicine projects and infrastructure as part of an overall $20 million disbursement through the USDA Rural Development Distance Learning and Telemedicine program.

The grants are the latest in a series of USDA Rural Development investments in rural health and health IT infrastructure needs (including telehealth, health information exchange and electronic health record technology needs) following a Memorandum of Understanding that the Department of Health and Human Services and USDA signed in 2011 to help link rural doctors and clinics to USDA Rural Development grants and loans.

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