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SIGNED! Bills to Increase Health Care Access, Address Inequities & Support Colorado Families Become Law

DENVER, CO – Today, the governor signed a slate of bills into law that aim to protect preventative health care coverage, address health disparities in underrepresented communities, expand access to vital reproductive care, and make diaper essentials widely available to low-income families in need.  

SB21-016, sponsored by Senators Brittany Pettersen and Dominick Moreno, would enshrine provisions already established by federal law under the Affordable Care Act – solidifying their place in Colorado law – and includes an expansion of covered preventative healthcare benefits to include osteoporosis screening, urinary incontinence screening, and STI screening and treatment. 

“Persisting barriers within our health care system keep patients from accessing the treatment they need,” said Senator Dominick Moreno (D-Commerce City)“With this bill, we will be able to break down some of these barriers while expanding access to preventative care to ensure that our residents can get the vital services they need to stay healthy.”

SB21-181, sponsored by Senator Rhonda Fields, would establish the Health Disparities and Community Grant Program, which will award money for the purposes of positively affecting social determinants of health to reduce the risk of future disease and health conditions in underrepresented populations.

“Marginalized communities are disproportionately impacted by health issues. From lack of access to care to over exposure to toxins, low income families and people of color face tremendous burdens when it comes to their health,” said Senator Rhonda Fields (D-Aurora)“In order to achieve health equity in our communities, we need to take steps to create social and physical environments that promote the health and well-being of all, no matter their socioeconomic status.” 

SB21-025, sponsored by Senator Brittany Pettersen, would make it easier for women – particularly those most marginalized – to access vital reproductive care by increasing income eligibility limits for family planning services up to 260 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). 

“Financial barriers inhibit the ability of many marginalized women throughout Colorado from accessing family planning services,” said Senator Brittany Pettersen (D-Lakewood)“The money in your pocket should never determine whether you can access health care. This law will expand eligibility for family planning services so that more Colorado women can afford contraceptive care, ultimately addressing health disparities as well as enhancing health equity in our most vulnerable communities.”

SB21-027, sponsored by Senators Brittany Pettersen and Jessie Danielson, would ensure that diaper essentials are made available to Colorado families in need amid the COVID-19 public health crisis. 

“We are the wealthiest nation in the world and yet some of our parents can’t afford diapers – that’s just unacceptable,” said Senator Jessie Danielson (D-Wheat Ridge)“It costs at least $80 per month to provide diapers for a child, which is simply unfeasible for families who have lost their jobs and struggle to afford rent, pay their bills, or buy food. Our families have suffered enough over the last year – providing access to diapers is the least we can do to help lessen the stress parents are already facing.”