Moab visit: FCC chair talks rural issues

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai toured Moab Wednesday, Aug. 22, meeting with hospital and school officials.

Pai, taking a few days from his Washington, D.C., office, met with educators regarding the tele-health education network at Grand County High School to emphasize the importance of rural broadband connections.

At Moab Regional Hospital, he spoke about issues such as patients’ access to specialists, improved health outcomes, and cost savings. One notable service currently being used is the “tele-stroke” program that allows video conferencing between local doctors, patients, and University of Utah neurologists.

Deb Lamarche, associate director of the Utah Telehealth Network, said Pai likes to get out of his D.C. office “and see what’s really happening.” She added, “He wanted to come to Moab to get a feel for the kinds of things that are in a rural community… and actually see the programs in action.”