VA Buys iPads And Verizon Plans To Expand Telemental Health Pilot

Zach Rausnitz | FierceMobileGovernment | July 2, 2013

As part of its home-based telemental health program, the Veterans Affairs Department awarded a contract on June 28 to Apple and Verizon to provide 250 iPads and 300 mobile broadband plans, respectively.

The department is buying them to expand its existing pilot program for home-based telemental health from its Portland, Ore., facility to all its health network sites in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, most of Idaho, and one county each in California and Montana.

Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) iOS and iPad are the only mobile platform and device compatible with the VA's telehealth videoconferencing system, a Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) product, because Cisco doesn't have a mobile application for any platforms other than Apple's iOS. The VA also considered Android and Windows 8 devices.