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Denver Democrats - Healthcare - Shot
Denver Democrats - Healthcare - Surgery
Denver Democrats - Healthcare - Baby
Denver Democrats - Healthcare - Pharmacy


  • Recognizing universal healthcare as a human right, we support the financing of healthcare through a public single payer system, demonstrated to be the most cost-effective and highest-quality approach to health coverage possible.

  • The Denver Democratic Party embodies justice and a respect for rights, as well as empathy and caring for others, so healthcare policies must cover and protect all residents. Health coverage must be universal, continuous, and portable.

    • Health coverage must include prescription drugs; mental healthcare; vaccines, dental, vision, hearing, and speech therapy; rural healthcare; home healthcare; long term care; chronic disease care; end of life/hospice care; preventive medicine; physical, occupational, and speech therapy; and complementary and alternative medicine; durable medical equipment and medical supplies; laboratory and imaging services; inpatient and outpatient hospital care; drug rehabilitation; pre- and post-natal care, and the full range of reproductive healthcare services.

    • Mental health parity in healthcare is essential, including funding and accountability for behavioral health services to prevent expensive emergency medical services, behavioral health admissions, involvement with the criminal justice system, fractured families, and suicide.

    • We seek a healthcare financing system that is transparent and accountable to the public. As appropriate healthcare is necessary for life, the health financing system should be held in the public trust with dedicated funds used to pay efficiently for healthcare services.

    • We support mandating that payers and providers must be transparent about costs, depicting the amount spent on actual healthcare versus administrative services.

    • We support fair pricing practices to curb market exploitation on medical goods and services.

    • We support allowing government purchasing entities the ability to negotiate prescription drug prices directly with manufacturers.

    • We believe that an investment in public health will curb incidence of preventable and chronic disease. We call for attention to be paid to vulnerable populations and encourage further research dollars for Denver institutions.

    • We must guarantee that patient needs are met during periods of stress on the healthcare system. This includes preparing for natural disasters and other healthcare emergencies, maintaining stockpiles, and improving communication between agencies and stakeholders.

    • We commit to enhancing our healthcare system's responsiveness to Long COVID and associated conditions by increasing research funding, improving access to specialized care, and developing strategies to mitigate impacts and mortality rates of these complex illnesses.

    • Health policy must be evidence-based and informed by the best available health system data.

    • Pharmaceutical companies that profited from the opioid market should be required to contribute to rehabilitation efforts in our communities.

    • We support policies to address nursing and health professional shortages, including increased enrollment/certification, significantly increased pay/benefits, and additional training and support.

    • Nutrition being vital to health, we support policies that eliminate neighborhood food deserts, increase access to local and organic foods, improve school breakfast and lunch programs, and ensure funding for vital food assistance programs.

    • We seek continued funding of stem cell research to seek treatments and cures.

    • We support the legalized use of medical cannabis prescribed for a patient by a physician at doses needed to alleviate patient conditions. Cannabis should be “descheduled” to advance medical research and utilization. We also advocate for the expansion of medical treatment options to include the regulated use of natural psychedelics, recognizing their potential therapeutic benefits.

    • New healthcare delivery models, such as telemedicine, emphasizing the provision of continuous, comprehensive, and coordinated care—provide for future innovation.

    • We support community-based alternative long-term care programs that emphasize independence rather than institutionalization, as well as the regulation of “independent living facilities” to prevent elder abuse or abuse of those with disabilities.

    • We support coordination of benefits and public health tracking for behavioral and mental health services.

    • We support Denver being more active in solving the opioid crisis, including providing funds to treat opiate addiction and promoting alternative pain management approaches.

    • As a public good, health coverage must not impose financial barriers to care.

    • Public dollars must not be used to subsidize private health insurers either directly or through premium assistance. Medicare and Medicaid must not be privatized in whole or part, but rather strengthened through improved benefits and coverage.

    • Health policy must seek to improve network adequacy in underserved areas.

    • Access to healthcare must not be artificially restricted or limited by prior authorizations, narrow networks, or patient financial status.

    • Support card check neutrality to expedite union organizing for  healthcare workers at Denver Health and other publicly supported medical facilities around the city of Denver.

    • We support medical decision-making as the purview of the patient/provider relationship, unimpacted by insurers, employers, or personal finances. Denver residents must have a full choice of providers, facilities, treatments, and care options.

    • Patient protection must address anti-discrimination in both coverage and care including, but not limited to, reproductive rights, gender-affirming care, personal genetic information, end-of-life care options, patient/provider relationships, and employment protections.

    • We support empowering individuals with full ownership and control over their healthcare data.

    • Colorado guarantees a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any effort to weaken or undermine that right, including limiting funding of essential reproductive health services. It is important to continue to offer education and family planning services, which have been effective in reducing abortion rates in Colorado.

    • Significantly reduce the need for abortion by eliminating financial and access barriers to contraceptive service and pre- and post-natal care, providing comprehensive reproductive education, and funding nutrition and affordable childcare.

    • We are in full support of enshrining reproductive health care, including abortion, as a constitutional right in Colorado.

    • We support the reinstatement of the provisions of Roe v. Wade as federal precedent or through new legislation.

The coronavirus pandemic has exposed critical flaws in healthcare infrastructure. Simply having insufficient or no coverage at all puts individuals and families at a significant disadvantage in avoiding serious disease. Supply chains for critical equipment and supplies were disrupted. Healthcare workers have been working difficult hours in substandard conditions. A lack of common health infrastructure and universal coverage has prevented an appropriate and effective response. It is imperative that a comprehensive and universal response to the gaps in our healthcare system is made at once. We cannot tolerate the inevitable effects of a “market-based” system on personal and public health.

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