April 9, 2021

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, COLO. – April 9, 2021 – Colorado Hospital Association (CHA), the Colorado Medical Society, and the Colorado Association of Health Plans (CAHP) are united in opposition to House Bill (HB) 21-1232, a proposed state-run public option that would have devastating consequences for Colorado’s health care system.

Colorado’s hospitals, doctors, and health plans have a longstanding commitment to improving health care affordability. As collaborative partners, they have brought many innovative and reasonable solutions to the table on this issue for several years. Despite months of working with proponents and legislators in good-faith negotiations to find a workable solution, CHA, CMS, and CAHP were unable to reach consensus with legislators and the Polis administration before committee on legislation that would achieve the cost savings that Coloradans are seeking and protect access to high-quality health care. We remain committed to solutions that can achieve those goals.

“Our hospitals have been proud to care for Colorado throughout the pandemic, and now we need help to fight cuts to hospitals and providers that will hurt our communities,” said Chris Tholen, CHA president and CEO. “The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged our hospitals like never before, and they have answered the call for Coloradans by providing care for thousands of COVID-19 patients, offering community testing, and administering vaccines. Now, despite months of working with proponents of a state-run public option, we must oppose this proposal that tears down both the very strength of our health care system that we have relied on so much this year and the affordability efforts that are just starting to produce results.”

“Colorado has some of the highest quality health care in our nation and is a destination for many of America’s top doctors,” said Bryan Campbell, CMS CEO. “Our physician members serve their patients from a large number of settings – one-person practices, large group practices, and hospital practices. This proposal will impact the ability of each of them to provide great patient care, especially in rural and underserved areas. It will also discourage new physicians from coming to Colorado and restrict access to high quality care.”

“The health care industry continues to innovate to provide high quality, affordable health care to Coloradans while reducing premiums by 28 percent since 2019 and increasing competition in Colorado counties,” said Amanda Massey, CAHP executive director. “This bill ignores the progress being achieved in order to establish a government run health insurance authority that relies on taxpayer dollars and doesn’t play by the same rules. Coloradans want common sense solutions in health care – not a foundation for a single payer health care system that will reduce quality and eliminate choice of doctors, hospitals, and health plans.”

About Colorado Hospital Association

Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) is the leading voice of Colorado’s hospital and health system community. Representing more than 100 member hospitals and health systems throughout the state, CHA serves as a trusted, credible and reliable resource on health issues, hospital data and trends for its members, media, policymakers and the general public. Through CHA, Colorado’s hospitals and health systems work together in their shared commitment to improve health and health care in Colorado. Learn more at www.cha.com.

About Colorado Medical Society

The Colorado Medical Society champions health care issues that improve patient care, promote physician professional satisfaction and create healthier communities in Colorado. To learn more about CMS, visit www.cms.org.

About Colorado Association of Health Plans

The Colorado Association of Health Plans is the trade association of the health insurance industry and we advocate for high quality, affordable and evidenced based health care on behalf of more than 3 million Coloradans. Comprised of health insurance providers offering health plans in Colorado, we work together with the community to provide solutions for a sustainable health care system, with coverage for all, that meets the needs of consumers, employers, and public purchasers.