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Colorado Health Access Fund

About the Fund  Funding Opportunities  Fund Impact  Future of the Fund

Overview

The Colorado Health Access Fund (the CHA Fund) is a Field of Interest Fund managed by The Denver Foundation, which is entrusted to oversee its grantmaking and evaluation. Established in 2014 with an anonymous gift of $40 million, the Fund is dedicated to improving health outcomes for underserved Coloradans. Between 2015 and 2022, the fund was charged to distribute grants to increase access to health care and improve health outcomes for populations with high health care needs across the state. We are committed to allocating resources among rural, urban, and suburban areas in Colorado.

Areas of focus were informed by an asset-and-gap analysis commissioned by The Denver Foundation in 2014. The goal of the analysis, conducted by the Colorado Health Institute (CHI), was to glean a solid understanding of Colorado’s diverse health care landscape and to guide the development of this Request for Proposals (RFP). The report resulting from this analysis, “Flashpoints and Fixes: An Asset and Gap Analysis of Barriers to Care for Coloradans with High Health Needs,” can be found here.

The CHI report noted that the majority of Colorado Health Statistic Regions included mental/behavioral health care as a local public health priority and this was echoed in every community dialogue conducted by CHI. In discussions with health and community foundations, mental health and substance use disorder were identified as the most pressing issues across the state. Thus, the CHA Fund focuses on increasing access to the treatment of behavioral health care.

The Fund includes four focus areas for funding of behavioral health care projects:

1. Education of those with high health needs, as well as their families and caregivers;
2. Transitions in care;
3. Innovation of care delivery; and
4. Improved access to care, particularly in rural communities.

The intent of the Fund is to increase access to behavioral health care to Coloradans with high health care needs across the state. Those with high health care needs are defined as those who have an identified behavioral health issue and are a member of at least one of these populations that are known to be un/underserved:

Persons with multiple chronic or acute health conditions;
Persons impacted by racial health disparities; 
Individuals enrolled in Health First Colorado;
Persons who lack health insurance coverage or have significant barriers to accessing coverage;
Persons who are experiencing homelessness;
Persons who are justice-involved;
Persons with a disability; and/or
Persons whose primary language is other than English.

For information on our most recent and past evaluation results, please visit our Fund Impact Page.

Questions

Questions after reading the materials? Please email our team at CHA@denverfoundation.org.

Resources & Links

View the most recent list of CHA grantees [PDF]
View the CHA Advisory Committee Roster [PDF]
View Flashes & Fixes - Full Report [PDF]
View Flashes & Fixes - Executive Summary [PDF]
View Leveraging Learning: A Framework for Evaluating the Colorado Health Access Fund
Grantee Reporting Form
View and download Behavioral Health Data in Colorado and New Models for Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care by the Colorado Health Institute. The workbook is a compilation of the latest available data on the behavioral health of adults, high school students and children in each of the state’s 21 Health Statistics Regions (HSRs). The data are sortable by region, allowing for comparison across regions and to state averages.