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Alexander: Senate Passes Bill to Help Doctors Treat Complex Diseases in Rural Tennessee

Legislation cosponsored by Alexander would help improve collaboration among rural doctors and specialists in other areas so doctors can better serve their patients

WASHINGTON, Nov. 29, 2016 – U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) released the following statement today after the Senate passed the Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (ECHO) Act, which Alexander cosponsored:

"This bill will help provide a way for people who live in rural Tennessee and other rural and underserved areas who are suffering from complex illnesses to get the specialized care they need more quickly and more conveniently – even when there are no medical specialists near where they live. The legislation will instruct the Department of Health and Human Services to study technology that would help connect doctors in rural areas to specialists at institutions such as Vanderbilt University, so the doctors can better serve people in their communities. I commend Sens. Hatch and Schatz for their bipartisan work on this bill.”

The Senate unanimously passed the ECHO Act, which was introduced by Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii). Sen. Alexander was one of 15 cosponsors on the bill.