Now, compared to the rest of the country, Colorado consistently ranks at or near the top for healthy residents and health outcomes. Nevertheless, in a lot of ways, our health disparities reflect those of the rest of the nation in terms of poverty, race, and geography. The idea that is everybody is created equal in the eyes of the law doesn’t really apply to health and medicine. Individual genetic and environmental differences, along with access to healthcare services, can all have a big influence on average health outcomes.

Recognizing the pattern and causes of these disparities can help make positive changes to the state’s healthcare system and determine how to best allocate the available resources….

 

  • Disparities in Healthcare and Socio-Economic Status
  • Regional Disparities in Health Outcomes
  • Regional Disparities in Healthcare Costs

 

Looking Ahead to the Future

We admit there are no easy solutions to these problems, no magic wand that can be waved to make it all better overnight or even next year. But there are things we can do. We need not fly blind. In 2017, the state legislator enacted SB 14-187 to establish the Colorado Commission on Affordable Health Care.

The Colorado Center on Law and Policy (CCLP) is one the best state resources for “promoting justice, economic security, access to health care and sound fiscal policies.” Lest you think this is just another wasteful government program, you can read a dedicated defense of the Colorado Commission on Affordable Health Care from the CCLP. The gist is that the state wants to look for ways to manage future healthcare spending by identifying areas of inefficiency and ineffectiveness. Kind of like health equity and health disparities in Colorado. It’s a measure of our goals, our reality, and how we can work to bridge the divide in our state.

 

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