Colorado Access chosen to administer CHP+ program

Colorado Access will administer the Colorado Child Health Plan Plus during the next fiscal year.
The Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing chose the organization to provide both health and pharmacy benefits management for a projected 28,000 children and 1,600 pregnant women. The group also will assist the state’s provider network, which includes more than 7,700 providers.

Memorial nurses receive critical care certification

Memorial Hospital for Children’s pediatric intensive care nursing department has earned a critical care certification.
Of 2.5 million registered nurses, only about 53,000 are certified in the critical care arena.
To apply for certification, registered nurses must complete 1,750 hours of direct bedside care in acute or crucial care units and pass a thee-hour, 150-question exam focusing on their area of specialty.

Colorado Health Foundation giving $6 million in grants

The Colorado Health Foundation will award $6 million in grants during 2008 for its Healthy Connections health information technology initiative.
The money is in addition to the group’s initial investment of $2.5 million last year, and will be used to purchase software and hardware for providers caring for low-income, uninsured Coloradoans.

Flu rates triple in El Paso County

The number of hospitalized influenza cases surged during January and February in El Paso County.
The Department of Health and Environment reports that there were 22 people hospitalized during January, a significant increase compared to the three reported cases during January 2007. During February, 89 hospitalizations were reported, more than tripling last season’s case total of 26.
More than 50 percent of patients were older than 20, said Bernadette Albanese, medical director for the health department.

CSU launching public health master’s degree program

Colorado State University’s public health graduate program will open its doors to its first students in August.
The graduate degree program is integrated with the Colorado School of Public Health, which includes the University of Colorado at Denver’s health sciences programs and the University of Northern Colorado’s community health units.

Health care site examines reform plans

A new health care reform Web site, provides politicians’ viewpoints on the subject, as well as opinion, news and analysis aimed at increasing the dialogue about health care. The site,, plans to facilitate a “broad discussion” of the issues through an outline of various health care reform proposals, and features a plan comparison grid […]

Retiring? Better have at least $225,000

A couple retiring this year will need about $225,000 in savings just to cover medical costs in retirement, according to analysis by Fidelity Investments. The figure, calculated for a couple age 65, is up 4.7 percent from the $215,000 estimate for 2007, the financial services company said. And it is similar to other projections for […]

Nonprofits offering loan assistance to rural doctors

Three nonprofit organizations are combining resources to combat the shortage of primary care doctors in rural and urban clinics — facilities that provide care for uninsured and underinsured Colorado residents.
The Colorado Health Foundation, the Colorado Community Health Network and the Colorado Rural Health Center have created a $6 million program that provides student loan repayment assistance to as many as 12 doctors a year who are willing to practice either in rural or urban underserved communities.

New Penrose COO on the job

Jamie Smith starts today as the Chief Operating Officer of Penrose-St. Francis Health Services. He succeeds Andrea Coleman, who resigned Jan 25. Smith has been working at the Centura Health Service Center as vice president of operations since June 2007. Prior to coming to Centura, he spent five years in hospital management as vice president […]

Governor’s report reveals millions in unpaid costs

Trauma care providers say a report released by Gov. Bill Ritter’s Office of Policy and Initiatives verifies what they have been saying for four years: the switch from a no-fault auto insurance system to a tort system has left trauma care providers with millions of dollars of unpaid costs.
The costs are shifted to health insurers and consumers through increased co-pays, deductibles and other charges.

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