Yesterday’s FCC vote to impose open Internet rules could have far reaching effects on the growing need for access to Health Information Technology (HIT) for patients at highest risk and with the greatest need for quality information and tools for improving healthcare.
By defeating special interests seeking to charge higher fees to customers for certain types of web content, the new rules known as “net neutrality” will classify the Internet as a utility, thereby making it a shared interest for all.
Does having internet access have the potential to improve outcomes for high risk women in pregnancy? Assistant Professor of Nursing at Columbia University, Adriana Arcia, is launching a grant-funded study involving the Maternity Neighborhood Care Guide to explore the feasibility and acceptability of an online maternity education platform among Medicaid-enrolled women.
Adriana’s interest in this research strikes a chord with our vision, “Awareness of the digital divide should be balanced against the understanding that non-users are a shrinking minority as more people go online every day. Therefore, a proactive approach to providing health literate maternity information for at-risk women is indicated.”
We’re excited to support this project as a way to better understand how lack of access to internet tools can be a barrier to quality care delivery. Kudos to the FCC for the vote to maintain the growing momentum for universal access to internet as well!