Dr. Donald A.B. Lindberg introduces Professor Rashid Bashshur and the lecture on the history of telemedicine. Prof. Bashshur tracks the technology needed for telemedicine, beginning with the optical telegraph in the 18th century by Claude Chappe (1763-1805). The next great leap in technology, according to Prof. Bashshur, occurred in 1872 with the development of wireless telegraphy by Mahlon Loomis (1826-1886). Prof. Bashshur gives Elisha Grey credit for inventing the telephone and describes it as important in the development of telemedicine. In linking health care to technology, the United Kingdom (1864-1945) was the first country to use communication technology in the practice of medicine. In the United States, the Hill-Burton legislation of 1949 was important for providing federal funds to modernize hospitals. In 1964 the Regional Medical Program began to provide biomedical research to the American people. For example, Michael DeBakey used closed-circuit television to teach open heart surgery.