Come So Far, Still Further to Go

Reflections on Using Data to Motivate and Guide Our Work

To Our Valued Stakeholders,

Yesterday, the Colorado Health Institute published the 2023 Colorado Health Access Survey.  I always look forward to the survey’s findings to better understand the factors influencing health outcomes in our state. I want to understand how people are doing and reflect on what our organization can be doing to help address persistent gaps in health coverage.

The survey showed the uninsured rate dropped to a historic low of 4.6 percent in 2023. However, with the official public health emergency over and people losing eligibility for Medicaid, we expect that figure to change. One of our areas of focus continues to be helping people transition coverage from Medicaid to our Marketplace. For this coming year, we have prioritized helping these people stay covered through various outreach campaigns, including calls, texts, letters, public service announcements, and community-based outreach. If you want to help raise awareness, please check out the dedicated #KeepCOCovered website page and the resources available.

The survey also found that cost remains the biggest factor in people going uninsured. It shared that some people struggle to find sources to learn about their health care. We know that our Marketplace can help with both of these issues in a major way: we have more financial help for premiums and out-of-pocket costs than ever before, and we offer free enrollment help and education from experts who can walk people through all their health insurance options.

First, these findings underscore to me how important it is that the Health Insurance Affordability Enterprise exists. I’m grateful we have a mechanism to provide extra financial help for our customers above and beyond the federal tax credits and cost-sharing reductions. Over the past three years, tens of thousands of Coloradans have enrolled in plans with extra cost-sharing reductions attached thanks to the Enterprise.

Second, the findings illustrate how we’ve come so far, but we’ve still got a way to go when it comes to people knowing who we are and what we do. I’ve been busy since Open Enrollment ended connecting with leaders of businesses, local governments, and community-based organizations. It’s important to me to stay in tune with people in Colorado communities and remind them of how we help folks learn about their health care coverage in addition to signing them up.

Please note, our Customer Service Center will be closed this Monday, February 19 in observation of President’s Day.

Take care,

Kevin Patterson, MURP, MPA
Chief Executive Officer
Connect for Health Colorado