FCC Chairman Ajit Pai: Net neutrality repeal will help telemedicine

Ajit Pai, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, said during a speech on aging and technology in Washington, D.C., Nov. 30, his proposal to reverse Obama-era net neutrality regulations has the potential to support access to telemedicine.

Mr. Pai released the FCC's final proposal to repeal net neutrality rules Nov. 22 as part of his tentative agenda for the FCC's open meeting Dec. 14. The proposal, called "Restoring Internet Freedom," would enact "light-touch regulation" over broadband companies, Mr. Pai said at the time.

During his Nov. 30 speech, Mr. Pai said net neutrality was "one of the biggest drags on investment in faster, better, cheaper broadband."

"One aspect of this proposal I think is worth highlighting here is the flexibility it would give for prioritizing services that could make meaningful differences in the delivery of healthcare," Mr. Pai said. "By ending the outright ban on paid prioritization, we hope to make it easier for consumers to benefit from services that need prioritization — such as latency-sensitive telemedicine."

Mr. Pai added the FCC will consider an agency proposal to increase funding for its Rural Health Care Program, which provides eligible healthcare providers with funding for broadband and telecommunications services, at the Dec. 14 meeting.

To access Mr. Pai's remarks given Nov. 30, click here.

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