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RESTON, VIRGINIA - LightSquared agreed to donate to Indian Health Services up to 2,000 satellite phones along with the service to support them. The donation is a reflection of LightSquared's broader mission to bring twenty-first century communications to rural regions including tribal areas that in some cases still lack basic telecommunications service.LightSquared, the nation's first wholesale-only integrated 4G-LTE wireless broadband and satellite network, announced Monday the delivery of satellite devices for tribal nations in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Arizona.
These satellite phones represent LightSquared's commitment to assist the Indian Health Service (IHS), tribes and tribal organizations in reaching American Indian and Alaska Native communities located beyond the reach of landline and cell phone networks.
"These satellite phones will play a critical role for health care workers who often find themselves in locations beyond the reach of traditional communications services. For Public Health Nurses and Community Health Representatives, the ability to communicate to doctors and other health professionals while visiting patients in the remotest parts of Indian Country has a critical impact on delivery of health care," said Indian Health Services CIO Charles Gepford.
Indian Health Services is the lead federal health care agency for American Indian and Alaska Native populations. The first wave of LightSquared-provided satellite phones has already been delivered to Indian Health Services. These phones will be distributed to Tribally-operated health care facilities including the Coquille Indian Tribe Community Health Center in Coos Bay, Oregon; the Nisqually Tribal Health Clinic in Nisqually, Washington; the Benewah Medical Center in Plummer, Idaho; and facilities in the Tohono O'odham Nation in Sells, Arizona.
Tribal Public Health Nurses, Community Health Representatives and ambulances who work from these and other medical centers will be able to use the satellite phones as they travel in remote locations to provide medical care.
LightSquared has a history of providing communications services for improved connectivity in Tribal communities. Through its business partnerships, LightSquared provides equipment and services to Bureau of Indian Affairs law enforcement vehicles and to school buses operating on Tribal lands in New Mexico and Arizona.
With a similar focus on communities in need, the company has delivered essential communications services to areas hardest hit by natural disasters and destruction such as Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf, the earthquake in Haiti and the tornadoes in Joplin, Missouri.
"When providing health care to tribal communities, medical providers need to focus on the task at hand, not on whether technology will work in rugged conditions," said Sanjiv Ahuja, chairman and chief executive officer of LightSquared. "We're happy to partner with Indian Health Services, tribes and tribal organizations to bring critical communications equipment to these underserved communities."
posted August 2, 2011 6:50 am edt
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