Coronavirus will add 500,000 people to Colorado’s Medicaid rolls — with major consequences for the health care system |

Coronavirus will add 500,000 people to Colorado’s Medicaid rolls — with major consequences for the health care system

From hospital profits to insurance prices to policy debates, the pandemic has reshaped the debate about health care in Colorado

John Ingold
The Colorado Sun
A sign outside Saint Joseph Hospital in Denver, photographed on Oct. 22, 2019.
John Ingold, The Colorado Sun

DENVR — For years, lawmakers in Colorado have talked about fundamentally changing the state’s health care system. They’ve talked about creating more competition in the insurance industry or providing subsidies to make coverage more affordable. They’ve talked about tackling hospital prices and trimming profits.

And, now, after all that groundwork, the coronavirus pandemic has come along and flipped the table.

In the coming months, the state expects to add a half million people to its Medicaid rolls due to coronavirus-related job losses, bringing enrollment in the program to more than 1.8 million people. By December, nearly one out of every three Coloradans will be covered by Medicaid.

“This is unprecedented,” said Kim Bimestefer, the executive director of Colorado’s Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, which administers Medicaid in the state.

Read the full story here.

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