Pioneering Health Care in Colorado
Colorado boosters relentlessly promoted the state’s reputation as a health-care paradise. Here, clean healthy living on open land, fresh air, clear skies and mountain-spring water were touted as being able to cure whatever ailed you – if you could afford it. However, accessing health care was a significant challenge for the poor and minority groups like the southern, central, and eastern European immigrants who worked in mines, mills, factories and slaughterhouses in overcrowded urban centers across the United States and migrated to Colorado. Subject to poor working conditions and crowded living conditions, the urban poor were especially susceptible to disease. In Denver, their plight was addressed through the philanthropy undertaken by a variety of ethnic and religious groups.