Using Colorado Longitudinal Data to Address Food Insecurity and Support Equity in Postsecondary Education and Training
This project will inform Colorado’s efforts to increase college attainment by supporting students’ needs for food and related human services. Many college students struggle with food insecurity, and evidence increasingly suggests that food insecurity can act as a barrier to postsecondary success. Colorado state agencies and postsecondary institutions are looking for ways to expand student participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to ensure that students receive nutritional support and to advance equity in postsecondary education.
Social Health information Exchange (S-HIE) is recognized in Colorado as a prime opportunity to improve care coordination and reduce barriers experienced in delivering high-quality care with effective resource use. This collaborative effort between the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, the Colorado Lab, Illuminate Colorado, and the Kempe Center will assess the feasibility of leveraging for maternal health innovation through the Plan of Safe Care pilot study which focuses on health and well-being of maternal infant dyads affected by perinatal substance use.
CAPABLE (Community Aging in Place–Advancing Better Living for Elders) is a program developed by Johns Hopkins University to improve quality of life, improve functional ability, reduce hospitalizations, and reduce nursing home admissions in older adults. The Colorado Lab will evaluate the CAPABLE program in Colorado.
This qualitative research study will elicit experiential data from birthing individuals impacted by substance use/substance use disorders, from pregnancy through the first year postpartum. By including the perceptions and experiences of those with lived expertise, data on barriers and facilitators to cross-system care coordination for family well-being and perinatal health can be understood from multiple vantage points.
Substance use during pregnancy is a growing issue that demands cross-system solutions. The Colorado Lab, Illuminate Colorado, and the Kempe Center are collaboratively leading a four-year pilot to develop a data-informed strategic framework for coordinated Plan of Safe Care service delivery and tracking across Colorado.
The Colorado Child Abuse Prevention Trust Fund provides leadership, collaborative support, and advising and makes recommendations regarding child maltreatment prevention planning, implementation, alignment, and investments across Colorado, with a statutorily-defined focus on primary and secondary prevention. The Colorado Lab is developing a multi-year Prevention Investment Strategy Plan that promotes better data-informed decision-making and smart state investments in child maltreatment prevention.
SB 21-194 (Maternal Health) includes a provision authorizing a study on the use of research evidence (URE) in policies related to the perinatal period in Colorado. The Colorado Lab has partnered with CDPHE to conduct this study and develop data-informed guidance for improving URE in policy creation and uptake, with the goal of reducing perinatal health disparities.
SB21-118 created an Alternative Response pilot program for Adult Protective Services. The Colorado Lab is partnering with CDHS and up to 15 urban and rural counties to develop and evaluate an alternative to a full investigative approach that will allow county departments of human services to respond to lower-risk reports of mistreatment or self-neglect of an at-risk adult.
Colorado ranks among the lowest in the nation in terms of the percentage of the population receiving benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) with about 60% of eligible residents participating. This study examines the impact of SNAP enrollment on healthcare costs–particularly emergency room visits and hospitalizations–among Colorado residents enrolled in Medicaid. If the study identifies substantial cost savings, it will provide a fiscal reason for increasing enrollment in SNAP among those who are eligible.
Colorado is taking a data-informed approach to understanding the needs of non-professional caregivers who take care of loved ones with chronic or acute health conditions or developmental disabilities. This project examines the impact of the TCARE process on caregiver well-being and use of preventive health care, while also looking qualitatively at whether TCARE is a viable care option in Colorado.
Families affected by substance use during a pregnancy are at risk for infant and maternal mortality, significant health consequences, and threats to well-being of the family as a whole. This data linkage study improves our ability to monitor current trends by establishing a comprehensive set of definitions for prenatal substance use for affected mothers and infants in Colorado.
Almost 13% of the population in Mesa County, Colorado lack access to or have limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate foods. This project developed a training video to enhance the ability of medical professionals and educators to identify and discuss food insecurity with their clients and families. The efficacy of the video at increasing access to food assistance programs among the food insecure will be tested as part of a future project.
The stress of navigating unaffordable housing contributes to poor mental health, but there is more to understand about the intersection of housing and mental health. Using Colorado statewide data at the census tract level, this study uses geospatial analytical techniques to investigate geographic relationships and identify priority area census tracts where these two critical issues coincide.
A large number of Coloradans find themselves in need of services from multiple public systems, and government leaders struggle to understand the best way to coordinate a shared response for these multisystem utilizers. This project starts the work of building common metrics of public system utilization across state agencies so that state government leadership and their teams can make more informed decisions about how to meet the needs of multisystem utilizers.