FairPoint, New England Telehealth Consortium connect 250 facilities with 1 Gbps Ethernet

FairPoint Communications and the New England Telehealth Consortium (NETC) announced that they have recently connected 250 sites with the telco's 1 Gbps Carrier Ethernet Services (CES) product.

Founded by Jim Rogers, president of ProInfoNet, NETC is a consortium of healthcare providers formed to create a shared network serving rural and urban healthcare facilities in northern New England. NETC has been able to link these facilities together via a $24.6 million grant from the FCC Rural Health Care Pilot Program (RHCPP).

Out of all of the entities that applied for funding, NETC said that it got the largest award by the FCC under the RHCPP. Participants are eligible to receive funding for up to 85 percent of the costs associated with constructing the network and the services provided by the network.

FairPoint's $700 million-plus investment in its northern New England fiber network enables it to cover the majority of NETC's needs. Besides FairPoint, NETC works with other regional service and solutions providers to get other services including Internet and Internet2 access, router equipment and the NETC network operations center support.

NETC said that because of the RHCPP award, participating healthcare providers are receiving funding "for upgrades and improvements to their broadband capabilities and connections, while paying only 15 percent of the costs."

In November 2012, FairPoint won a four-year, $16 million contract to provide connectivity for the NETC. Under the terms of that agreement, the telco will provide Carrier Ethernet services to more than 400 healthcare sites throughout its northern New England territory, including Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

For more:
- see the release

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