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640 Coloradans participated in forums designed to raise the voice of Coloradans around the design and implementation of the Colorado Health Benefit Exchange. Over 40 forums were held from Lamar to Durango, from the San Luis Valley to Grand Junction and from Pueblo to Greeley. The Colorado Public Interest Research Group (CoPIRG), Colorado Consumer Health Initiative (CCHI) and the Colorado Center on Law and Policy (CCLP) coordinated the statewide effort along with local sponsors at many of the forums.
“The Colorado Health Benefit Exchange’s mission is to increase affordability, access and choice for Colorado individuals and small businesses around health insurance,” said the Director of CoPIRG, Danny Katz. “This will make a real impact in hundreds of thousands of Coloradans lives but we know it won’t work unless it works for Coloradans. So we organized forums to get feedback about how the Exchange would need to be set up.”
Each forum lasted between 45 minutes to an hour. Attendees received a brief overview of the current status of the Colorado Health Benefit Exchange but spent the majority of the forum filling out a nine-page questionnaire designed to understand how the Exchange could best work for them.
“The current board members of the CHBE have their hands full and we didn’t think they’d have a chance to generate this kind of feedback from Coloradans from across the state. So we did it for them. Our goal is to raise their voice so that the Exchange succeeds in its mission,” said Katz.
The coalition is currently databasing all the information collected and will be producing a report that will be given to the CHBE Board Members to ensure they create an exchange that succeeds in helping individuals and small businesses in Colorado.
The Colorado Health Benefit Exchange was created by SB-200 in June 2011. The board was appointed in July and has begun their designing the Exchange.
This project is made possible by the generous support from Community Catalyst through the ACA Implementation Fund, as well as support from the Caring for Colorado Foundation and the Rose Community Foundation.
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