Gov. Jay Inslee stepped into a small room in a Friday Harbor hospital on Tuesday and faced a large, white screen as if he were going to stand and watch a movie. A Bellingham pediatrician wearing a headset popped onto the screen, introduced himself as Dr. Jim Bochsler and had a live conversation with the governor from 60 miles away.
It was the governor’s first telemedicine experience. But for hospital patients at the PeaceHealth Peace Island Medical Center, appointments like this could be part of the new normal.
What makes it possible is a strong, reliable internet connection.
Improved medical access is just one way that rural communities will benefit because of the broadband bill that Inslee signed during this year’s session. Inslee visited Skagit County and San Juan County Tuesday to explore how increased broadband access could positively impact a community’s health care, economy, education and public safety interests.
The day-long broadband tour highlighted how rural communities across the state will benefit from the governor’s broadband bill. Inslee signed it into law earlier this month after the bill unanimously passed the Senate and left the House with one ‘no’ vote.
Read the rest of the story on the governor's Medium page.