March 26, 2024

Donations assure access to affordable health care

Kaiser Permanente grant and challenge spark $18.7 million for Denver Health’s uncompensated care.

Donors throughout the Denver community pitched in to exceed the goal set by a Kaiser Permanente community health grant and matching challenge, successfully raising $18.7 million to preserve and improve access to affordable health care and help ease the burden of rising unpaid care costs at Denver Health.

“Kaiser Permanente’s acknowledgment of Denver Health’s unique service to the community is truly appreciated,” said Donna Lynne, Denver Health CEO. “We extend our gratitude to all donors who engaged in this matching challenge, with special thanks to our dedicated employees. The widespread support of our community highlights the significance of Denver Health and the need for access to high-quality health care for everyone.”

In May 2023, Kaiser Permanente and Denver Health jointly announced a new $10 million commitment from Kaiser Permanente to assist Denver Health with urgent, vital health care services for the community, including continued access to primary and specialty care for people who do not have the means to pay.

Through the Kaiser Permanente Community Health Fund at The Denver Foundation, Kaiser Permanente funded an initial $5 million grant to address Denver Health’s immediate need. Another $5 million was available as a matching donation — an incentive for local organizations, members of the business community, members of the health care industry, and others — to step up and help Denver Health address the rising costs of uncompensated care.

The combined Kaiser Permanente $10 million commitment is the single largest gift Denver Health Foundation has ever received.

Kaiser Permanente is a leading nonprofit health plan, and this support for Denver Health is part of the organization’s mission to improve the health of the Colorado community.

“Kaiser Permanente made this commitment to Denver Health because it was the right thing to do,” said Mike Ramseier, regional president of Kaiser Permanente in Colorado. “Denver Health’s essential role in ensuring everyone in Denver can access high-quality, affordable health care, regardless of their background or circumstance, means this is an investment in a healthier community, which benefits us all.”

Roughly 8 months after its start, the matching challenge is complete. More than 1,200 unique donors rallied to the task, contributing more than 12,000 gifts to reach $18.7 million. With this infusion of funds, Denver Health can sustain and fortify programs that facilitate affordable access to the diverse array of health care services provided by the system, such as primary care, first responder and paramedic services, mental and behavioral health services, pediatric and maternal care, school-based health, and more.

The funds will be wisely used in key areas, specifically aimed at supporting services for underserved people, expanding critical health care services, and raising the overall quality of patient care.

Kaiser Permanente’s matching challenge with Denver Health exemplifies a shared commitment to improving community health. Denver Health and Kaiser Permanente remain steadfast in their missions to provide affordable, accessible, and quality health care. This joint effort serves as a testament to the power of working together to achieve meaningful outcomes.