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Challis Public Library awarded grant to offer Telehealth

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CHALLIS, Idaho (KIFI) - The Challis Public Library received a $23,500 grant for the purchase and installation of a privacy pod that will be used as a Telehealth space within the library.

The funding will also cover the cost of the technology needed for the pod to serve as a state-of-the-art space specifically designed for private medical appointments and consultations.

The grant was funded by the Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health and managed by the Idaho Commission for Libraries.

The Challis Public Library serves the largest population in the county. Currently, more than 30% of Custer County’s residents are aged 65 years or older, and as more people are choosing to retire in the Challis area, that number will continue to rise.

Some of the medical services not available in Challis include those for mental health, counseling, physical therapy, and specialized health care. Having a private Telehealth option with reliable internet and equipment at the Challis Public Library will help meet the health care needs of the community. Library staff anticipate operating the library an additional 10 hours per week to have more time for the privacy pods to be available, and staff plan to partner with local health care and senior service providers.

“This dedicated space will allow people to meet with health care providers virtually and receive the service they would otherwise have to miss entirely or travel to access, and travel from our area can be difficult due to weather, challenging roads, and cost," Challis Public Library Director Becky Mitchell said.

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