With a mission to bridge gaps in health and wellness for our neighbors in need, McKee Wellness Foundation is committed to maintaining a pulse on issues – both for today and tomorrow – that make the greatest impact on saving and changing lives.

The community needs assessment was a demonstration of this commitment, gathering input from 34 partners, stakeholders, individuals, and resources across the region to gain a deeper understanding of challenges facing residents of Larimer and Weld Counties. Contributors represented the areas of healthcare, mental health, senior care, public education, veterans’ needs, emergency response, case management, and more.

Healthcare Affordability and Financial Toxicity

The healthcare landscape in our communities is marred
by increasing costs, resulting in mounting financial burdens for patients. In Larimer County, 64% of
residents indicate they go without healthcare as a
result of cost, and 40% are concerned they’ll be
unable to pay for the care they need. Predominant
areas of concern include cancer care,
dental care, prescription coverage, and addressing
the specific needs of our vulnerable populations.


In Larimer and Weld Counties, transportation
barriers impede access to essential healthcare
services. Limited public and low-cost transportation options present barriers to healthcare access for populations like the mobility-impaired and
older adults. 14% of those living at or slightly
above poverty level cite transportation as a barrier
to accessing healthcare. Transit is further challenged
for individuals in remote areas. Whether transporting individuals to care or care to individuals, opportunities exist to ensure equitable healthcare access.

Mental and Cognitive Health

In our communities, mental healthcare challenges
demand urgent attention. One in five Larimer County residents live with a mental health condition, and
suicide rates in our county are nearly twice the
national average. Segments of our community facing disproportionate need include children in our
K-12 systems, veterans, and older adults.

Healthcare Workforce Shortage

Healthcare workers are exiting the industry more
rapidly than we can replace, leaving facilities struggling
to meet the demands of an expanding population. Colorado ranks in the top 5 states facing greatest need,
anticipating a shortage of 10,000 nurses by 2026.
This shortage not only impacts the quality of care
and timeliness of access but adds to stress
among existing healthcare staff.


A fragmented network of services and support
exists across the healthcare landscape. Yet we
know that when individuals and organizations
unite to confront challenges, devise solutions,
and share resources, the potential for
transformative change is unstoppable. By
increasing awareness of existing resources,
we can improve patient/client referrals, decrease duplication of efforts, illuminate true gaps,
and better address complex problems.

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