Managing Healthcare Compliance in Colorado

Melissa Whetzel
Colorado state outline over a medical background

Colorado, like other states in the United States, has its own set of regulations and requirements that make managing healthcare compliance in Colorado tricky. Healthcare providers, facilities, and organizations in Colorado must navigate this complex regulatory environment to deliver effective and ethical healthcare services while avoiding legal and financial consequences.

To effectively manage compliance, healthcare organizations must establish a robust system for monitoring and interpreting these changes and swiftly implement necessary adjustments. This article provides an overview of key factors you’ll want to know about healthcare compliance in Colorado.

Colorado Healthcare Compliance Resources

Let’s start with the important state government agencies you’ll need to work with:

These agencies help maintain the integrity and quality of healthcare services in Colorado, protecting the public and promoting patient safety. The resources provided by these Colorado state agencies are essential for promoting public health, ensuring access to healthcare, supporting healthcare professionals, and enhancing overall health outcomes for the residents of Colorado.

Regulations Unique to Colorado

To meet the standards of healthcare compliance in Colorado, there are a few additional regulations. For example, because fires are a concern in many areas of the state, there are additional precautions that organizations must meet. 

Colorado Privacy Act (CPA)

The Colorado Privacy Act took effect on July 1, 2023 and places new obligations on covered entities to safeguard personal data, including the requirement to give Coloradans meaningful information about the collection and use of their data, to conduct data protection assessments, and to obtain consent before processing certain sensitive personal data. HIPAA-covered entities are not completely exempt, but information maintained by a covered entity in the same manner as PHI is exempt. Unlike other states with similar general privacy laws, Colorado Privacy Act does not exempt non-profits.

Telehealth Requirements

Telehealth requirements continue to evolve in every state, including Colorado. As of the writing of this post, Colorado requires that healthcare providers obtain informed consent from patients before providing telehealth services and that a valid provider-patient relationship be established before providing telehealth services. Controlled substances can be prescribed via telehealth, but providers and there are specific regulations for telehealth services related to mental health. 

Medical Marijuana and Cannabis Regulations

Colorado was one of the first states to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, and has its own regulations regarding the sale and use of cannabis. These regulations can be quite different from those in states where marijuana remains illegal or is only available for medical use. To prescribe medical marijuana, providers must be licensed in Colorado, registered with the Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry and complete specific training related to medical marijuana. Maintenance of detailed records of patient evaluations and recommendations related to medical marijuana must be kept for up to three years and enforcement is through the Colorado Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division.

Tips To Manage Healthcare Compliance in Colorado

Effectively managing healthcare compliance in Colorado is a critical responsibility for healthcare organizations, as it ensures the delivery of high-quality care while adhering to legal and regulatory requirements. Here are some key strategies to help healthcare organizations manage compliance effectively:

  • Conduct State-Specific Training: Provide ongoing training and education to staff that is customized to your state’s regulations as well as your facility. If using a learning management system, ensure the vendor offers Colorado-approved training.
  • Organize Policies By Requirement: Including “CO” in every document that is required by the state will make it much easier for you to find these documents in an online system when a surveyor is onsite. It is also best practice to include the standard you are meeting for additional clarity.
  • Establish a System for Monitoring Risk: Being able to identify compliance risks before they become incidents or violations can save the entire organization time and money. Identifying trends and consistently reviewing reports can signal issues, such as training not being completed or a large number of incidents in one location.
  • Use Compliance Management Software: Accreditation surveyors say organizations that use compliance software are more prepared for onsite visits and surveys. The software helps to keep documents and policies organized, ensures training content is up-to-date, and makes reporting easy.

By implementing these strategies and fostering a culture of compliance within your healthcare organization, you can effectively manage healthcare compliance, reduce risks, and provide the best possible care to your patients while staying within legal boundaries.

Credentialing Compliance in Colorado

The Colorado Medical Board oversees medical credentialing and licensing within the state. Until March 2023, providers seeking medical credentialing in Colorado were required to submit a uniform application (Colorado Health Care Professionals Credentials Application). The legislature repealed this regulation paving the way for providers and entities to use platforms such as CAQH to more easily manage data. Colorado’s Medicaid program, Health First Colorado, also has an enrollment fee that must be submitted with the application. Learn more about credentialing in Colorado.

Meet Colorado Compliance Requirements With MedTrainer 

While the path may be complex, healthcare providers who prioritize compliance will not only avoid legal troubles but also enhance the quality of care they provide to their patients in Colorado. 

MedTrainer’s all-in-one compliance platform can streamline management of Colorado healthcare compliance. MedTrainer seamlessly consolidates your organization’s policies, incident reports, safety plans, HR documents, contracts, and more. This centralized repository ensures all employees have easy access to essential information. The course library is curated to align with regulatory and accreditation requirements, and courses are regularly added and updated to ensure the most current information. Learn more about MedTrainer today!