The USDA offers grants through their Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) Grant Program. These grants help rural communities use telecommunications to connect to each other and the world, overcoming the impact of remoteness and low populations density.

Heres what you need to know:

  • The grant program helps rural communities acquire the technology and training necessary to connect educational and medical professionals with the teachers and medical providers who serve rural residents at the local level.
  • Eligible applicants include state and local governments, for-profits, non-profits, Federally recognized Tribes, and others.
  • To be eligible for a grant, the telemedicine end user sites will have a patient population of 20,000 or less.

Application Tips and Requirements

  • Applicants must provide a minimum of 15% of the amount of grant money requested in the application. In-kind vendor donations are not currently eligible. Matching funds are one area where an applicant can make up points lost in other sections of the proposal.
  • Applicants who tell a compelling story about their need for a telemedicine program and how it will benefit the area can receive a large number of points.
  • The hardest points to earn are those for technological innovation, which show how the program plans to bring something new to the area.
  • Demonstrating the program’s cost effectiveness isn’t about getting the lowest possible price for equipment. Instead, try to show you’ve done your due diligence in considering the best fit for the program.

You may use your grant funds for:

  • Audio, video, and interactive video equipment
  • Broadband facilities that support distant learning or telemedicine
  • Computer hardware, network components, and software
  • Acquisition of instructional programming
  • Acquisition of technical assistance and instruction for using eligible equipment

Grant money can’t pay for the installation or construction of your telecommunications transmission facilities or recurring or operating expenses, other than leases for eligible equipment.

GlobalMed Works with USDA Grant Recipients

GlobalMed helps USDA grant recipients develop telemedicine solutions to improve outcomes for rural communities throughout the United States.

Program Resources are available at If you have any questions, you can contact a General Field Representative in your area at 202.720.0800 or [email protected].

Contact Us

GlobalMed is about as customized and individual as you can be. They go in and literally assess the need. What specialties do you need this technology for, whether it be a stroke or pediatrics or tele-dermatology, and then they customize the product to those needs.

Garfield JonesVice President of Sales, REACH Call

I can do everything but touch the patientI see a lot of the studies that say telemedicine is equivalent to being there. But, I actually think there is a case for saying at times telemedicine is better than being there.

Kathleen WebsterMD, Loyola University Health System