Category Archives: Stories


Theresa – Alamosa, CO

Theresa - Alamosa, COTheresa, of Alamosa, shares a deeply personal story about losing her daughter. In her story, she recalls the importance of small moments between her family and the hospital nurses that had a long lasting impact.

“The reason I got into the health care field is that through losing her .. I watched what the nurses did and [thought] that’s what I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to be there when people were going through the hard times.”

Also posted in Patient / Provider Relationship, Region 8 - Mineral, Saguache, Rio Grande, Conejos, Alamosa & Costilla Counties | Leave a comment


Logan – Rio Grande County, CO

Logan - Rio GrandeLogan shares his health story. Growing up, he struggled in gym class hated physical activity, especially running. While on his wellness adventure training for a marathon, Logan needed to return home and prove to himself that he wasn’t that unhealthy kid anymore.

“So the weight when I guess I was at my heaviest was about 230 [lbs], and right now I’m about 145 [lbs] and that’s mainly due to … running.”

Also posted in Health & Wellness, Prevention, Region 8 - Mineral, Saguache, Rio Grande, Conejos, Alamosa & Costilla Counties | Leave a comment


Elaine and Tracy – La Plata County, CO

Elaine - La Plata County, COElaine, of La Plata County, describes her difficulties with her oral health and her struggle to secure dentures. After failing to navigate the local health system on her own, she found help in the way of an senior health nurse navigator named Tracy. With the help of Tracy, Elaine is on the path toward recovery.

“I suffer depression and it’s mostly because I can’t eat. It takes me a whole hour to eat without my teeth.”

Also posted in Oral Health, Region 9 – Archuleta, Dolores, La Plata, Montezuma and San Juan Counties | Leave a comment


Diana – La Jara, CO

Diana - La Jara, CODiana, of La Jara, describes her experience with chronic ovarian cysts. She wanted to be as strong as her family, and developed an impressive pain tolerance so she could continue running. Although her doctors have agreed birth control would help, Diana can’t afford the medication and has to live with the uncertainty and pain.

“My family is all really tough…all of them. My dad’s a farmer and he’s like the strongest guy I’ve ever seen. I wanted to be as strong as my family.”

Also posted in Complex Health Conditions, Patient Populations, Region 8 - Mineral, Saguache, Rio Grande, Conejos, Alamosa & Costilla Counties | Leave a comment


Lares – Alamosa, CO

LaresF - Alamosa, COLares, of Alamosa, shares her health story. She shares her anxieties around navigating the health care system, finding the right provider, and the need for more humanity in health care.

“I think that [in] our health care system, because it’s just so massive, that personal connection and the humanity of it gets lost really easily.”

Also posted in Health Care Systems Issues, Navigating the Health Care System, Region 8 - Mineral, Saguache, Rio Grande, Conejos, Alamosa & Costilla Counties | Leave a comment


Jess – Denver, CO


Growing up going to a sleep-away camp, camp nurses played an important role in Jess’s life. She talks about how their immersion in campers’ and staff members’ everyday activities helped teach kids that health care professionals are “real people” too.

“There’s a lot of talk now about medical homes and integrated care… all of these buzz words. I think the camp nurse is the prime example of when this works best, because they’re living with you!”

Also posted in Featured, Patient / Provider Relationship, Region 20 - Denver County | 1 Response


Sandra – Adams County, CO

Sandra_SquareSandra, of Adams County, shares her health story. A few years ago she lost her job, suffered from physical health ailments, and needed some assistance. Her primary health care provider connected her with a behavioral health specialist who helped her through those stressful times.

“The stress of all of it, about finding a job, finding health care, it all builds on you… When I went to the clinic to get the physical health care taken care of, I was afforded the opportunity for some mental health care.”

Also posted in Behavioral Health, Region 14 - Adams County | Tagged | Leave a comment


Angela – Littleton, CO

AngelaC - Littleton, COAngela, of Littleton, shares her health experience. With a family history of breast, uterine, and ovarian cancer, Angela has always been very good about her women’s wellness visits. She tells her story about an abnormal test result and the emotional journey that followed.

“The moment was like a slap in the face. Because I knew that I had taken every preventable measure possible. I felt like my gut was being pulled in many different directions.”

Also posted in Featured, Region 15 - Arapahoe County | Leave a comment


Adrienne – Golden, CO

adrienne_pic (1)Adrienne, of Golden, shares her story. During her pregnancy Adrienne had no complications, but when her daughter Sylvia was born she could hardly breathe and then spent ten days in the NICU.

“I didn’t know if my child was going to survive. I didn’t know if I could even form an attachment… Everyone says the moment their child is born is the most magical moment of their life, but I kind of feel like I didn’t get that.”

Also posted in Access To Care, Health Insurance Coverage, Region 21 - Jefferson County | Leave a comment


Connor – Denver, CO

Connor - Denver, CO

Connor, of Denver, shares his story of personal transformation. Feeling like he had little control over his life, Connor seized the opportunity to get in shape and change his outlook through boot camp classes.

“I was looking at myself, I had kind of gotten a stomach, I was sitting at this desk all day, and you just think to yourself… this really isn’t who I am and I feel like my body doesn’t really reflect my personality. You’re thinking, there’s something that I can change here.”

Also posted in Featured, Prevention, Region 20 - Denver County | Leave a comment


Michele – Weld County. CO

MIchele - Weld County, COMichele is a nurse from Weld County.  She shares a story about the relationship between nurses and the families of their patients.

“I thought, how unique, both nurse and family member used the same exact words, but they were coming from a 180 degrees difference in how they felt this patient should be treated.”

Also posted in Patient / Provider Relationship, Region 18 - Weld County | Leave a comment


Laura – Durango, CO

Laura - Durango, CO

Laura, of Durango, is an RN working in one of the local School Based Health Centers. She shares her story about the kids she works with and the pride she takes in her job.

“Being in the school, being accessible, the kids can walk in anytime…Having it in a place that’s familiar to them really makes a big difference.”

Also posted in Access To Care, Featured, Region 9 – Archuleta, Dolores, La Plata, Montezuma and San Juan Counties | Leave a comment


Nancy – Salida, CO

Nancy_SquareNancy, a resident of Salida, CO, shares her story of developing and receiving treatment for Guillain–Barré syndrome. Within days, Nancy went from leading an active lifestyle to being completely paralyzed.  She describes her emotional experience on the road to recovery.

“When I was at the first hospital it was like a nice big round room and all glass windows and I could see the nurses’ station and I was comfortable there…But then, at the second hospital it was more private and the doors were closed and I could see anybody and I was afraid and I was upset and I was depressed.  I just couldn’t understand what was going on.”

Also posted in Complex Health Conditions, Region 13 - Chaffee, Lake, Fremont & Custer Counties | 1 Response


Julie – Salida, CO

JulieD_SquareJulie works at an oral health program in Chaffee County.  She shares the story of the impact of oral health on one local woman’s life.

“Part of it was because she worked in the restaurant business, had been for a long time…and as her teeth got worse she was pulled out of the public’s eye and she became a dishwasher and made less money. And so, she was really wanting to get her teeth back so she could have a higher paying job.”

Also posted in Oral Health, Region 13 - Chaffee, Lake, Fremont & Custer Counties | Leave a comment


John – Chaffee County

John_SquareJohn, a resident of Chaffee County, discusses his son’s lifelong condition of cystic fibrosis.  He explains that while his son has not been able to receive a lung transplant he has been able to lead a fulfilling and active life.

“He has surprised [the doctors] a whole lot of times because he’ll get way down and then he’ll snap back up.  So, we’re hoping that that rubber band keeps on working and he stays alive for longer than the next year.”

Also posted in Complex Health Conditions, Region 13 - Chaffee, Lake, Fremont & Custer Counties | Leave a comment


Jennifer – Westminster, CO

Jennifer - Westminster, CO

Jennifer, of Westminster, shares her health story. After a car accident, Jennifer struggled with migraines, back pain, depression and anxiety. She describes the difficulties not being able to care for  her family and the impact integrated care had on her recovery.

“It was very very depressing for me to go from being very active to being … just … bedridden. It was debilitating.”

Also posted in Patient / Provider Relationship, Region 14 - Adams County | Tagged | Leave a comment


Sara – Denver, CO

Sara - Denver, COSara is a family nurse practitioner in Denver. She talks about the challenges associated with serving a refugee population and the importance of cultural competency.

“We come from a perspective of Western medicine… [We have to] learn where they are coming from. What does hypertension mean to somebody from Nepal? We don’t really know.”

Also posted in Health Disparities, Patient Populations, Region 20 - Denver County | Tagged | Leave a comment


Pat – Basalt, CO

Pat - Basalt, CO

Pat, of Basalt, shares his health story. After a tragic spinal cord injury he became depressed and turned to alcohol. Under the careful eye of his primary care physician, Pat connected with a trainer, nutritionist, and behavioral health coach. The integrated approach helped Pat reach goals and set new sights for his future.

“I’ve gone from a single bike path where I would fall off every three steps, to now I feel like I’m navigating a six lane highway and the group is my bumper guards.”

Also posted in Patient / Provider Relationship, Region 12 - Garfield, Eagle, Pitkin, Summit & Grand Counties | Tagged | Leave a comment


Katie – Lamar, CO

Katie - Lamar, COKatie, of Lamar, shares her health story. After her husband’s passing, she struggled with grief, depression, and substance abuse. Fortunately, Katie now has an excellent relationship with her therapist and is doing much better.

“I got connected with my therapist, my substance abuse therapist, through my domestic violence therapist and my doctor… We’ve talked over some stuff I’ve never told anybody.”

Also posted in Health & Wellness, Patient / Provider Relationship, Region 6 - Kiowa, Crowley, Otero, Bent, Prowers, Huerfano, Las Animas & Baca Counties | Tagged | Leave a comment


Sarah – Colorado Springs, CO

Sarah - Colorado Springs, COSarah, a behavioral health provider in Colorado Springs, describes integrated care in her geriatric clinic. At their clinic, they have worked to tweak the “co-visit” to help both patients and their families.

“Her family [wasn’t] understanding how she was experiencing the world. And the provider and I were able to say medication isn’t going to do anything. And that united front really helped that family to understand.”

Also posted in Behavioral Health, Health Care Systems Issues, Patient / Provider Relationship, Patient Populations, Region 4 - El Paso County | Tagged | Leave a comment


Cheryl – Chaffee County

Cheryl describes Cheryl_Squareher experience working with her two siblings to identify a quality long term health care facility for their mother who has dementia.  While there was information available to assist them, Cheryl and her siblings found themselves in a very demanding situation.

“What I think was sad about that, though, was that we were so inundated with the practical matters that it was difficult to deal with what was going on in our family, the dynamic of our family.  You know, our mother was, for all intents and purposes, gone.”

Also posted in Navigating the Health Care System, Region 13 - Chaffee, Lake, Fremont & Custer Counties | Leave a comment


Jonathan – Denver, CO

Jonathan, a young man living in Jonathan - Denver, CODenver, describes his experience supporting his fiancé as she battled Lyme disease. It is a rare disease in the Rocky Mountain region and there are a limited number of providers able to provide adequate care for treatment.

“My perception was that the doctor would kind of control the path of the care…actually that was not the case.  Looking back at it now the doctor kind of took a stab at what what he thought was going on but didn’t really follow through on that.”


Also posted in Complex Health Conditions, Region 20 - Denver County | Leave a comment


Angela – Chaffee County

AngelaAngela, a young woman living in Salida, had been experiencing a number of chronic symptoms including pain and nausea for a long period of time but was unable to access appropriate care because of lack of insurance and affordability.  Due to recent changes in eligibility she was able to enroll in Colorado’s Adults without Dependent Children Medicaid Program, connect to a primary care provider and see a specialist who was ultimately able to make an accurate diagnosis.

“I would go in and out of the hospitals…and it would just be like take an ibuprofen, this will pass it’s just migraines, you know, nothing’s wrong.  And after a while I began to believe it, maybe I was just making things up or they were right.”

Also posted in Region 13 - Chaffee, Lake, Fremont & Custer Counties | Leave a comment


Sharon – Castle Rock, CO

SharonASharon of Castle Rock shares her experience responding to her husband’s sudden heart attack.  She speaks about the importance of having family and friends supportive and present throughout such a crisis.

“What I’ve discovered about myself is that I’m not doing stuff alone.  I’m not hesitating, you know, there are people in my life for a reason and I’m like all hands on deck…so, it’s reassuring and it’s calming.”

Also posted in Complex Health Conditions, Region 3 - Douglas County | Leave a comment


Sandie – Ft. Collins, CO

Sandie - Fort Collins, CO

Sandie, of Fort Collins, shares her personal transformation story. After years of yo-yo dieting and unhealthy habits, Sandie was able to lose more than 50 lbs and get off both her cholesterol and blood pressure medication. With her employer’s support, a weight counselor, friends and family, and a trainer, Sandie is supported on her journey to wellness.

“It took me several years to decide that I wanted to really do something about my weight… I found the quick fix wasn’t ideal for me.”

Also posted in Complex Health Conditions, Health & Wellness, Patient / Provider Relationship, Region 2 - Larimer County | Leave a comment