Colorado Public Health Workforce Collaborative

Program Overview

The Colorado Public Health Workforce Collaborative (CPHWC) is an initiative launched by Trailhead Institute. The Collaborative convenes a partnership of organizations providing structure and support for the field of public health through coordination and collaboration of workforce initiatives in the state of Colorado.

The Collaborative brings together partners from public health, governmental, academic, and nonprofit sectors with the mission to ensure that Colorado has an experienced, diverse, ample, inclusive, and innovative workforce to address public health challenges for years to come.

Trailhead convened the Collaborative in April 2020 to support the urgent need to increase the number of people working in the field of public health as contact tracers, case investigators, resource coordinators and several other positions at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the pandemic exacerbated persistent health disparities among Americans, it highlighted the need for the public health workforce to evolve. The work of the Collaborative has expanded to strategically envision how the field may take advantage of increased public awareness and funding from federal, state, and local agencies to ensure that Colorado’s public health workforce reflects the communities they serve.

The Collaborative also aims to address the widespread, persistent burnout being experienced by public health workers through advocating for policy, funding, and structural supports that are needed in order to sustain, retain, and accelerate those within the public health workforce.

Explore Key Milestones

The Collaborative consists of members from the following partner organizations:

  • The Alliance of Colorado Community Health Workers, Patient Navigators, and Promoters de Salud
  • Boulder County Public Health
  • Central Colorado Area Health Education Center
  • City and County of Denver Department of Public Health and Environment (DDPHE)
  • Colorado Association of Local Public Health Officials (CALPHO)
  • Colorado Cross-disability Coalition
  • Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE)
  • Colorado Health Institute (CHI)
  • Colorado Hospital Association
  • Colorado Medical Society
  • Colorado Safety-net Collaborative
  • Colorado School of Public Health
  • Denver Prevention Training Center
  • Immunize Colorado
  • Kiowa County Public Health
  • Metro Denver Partnership for Health (MDPH)
  • Patient Navigator Training Collaborative
  • Prowers County Public Health and Environment
  • Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment
  • Rocky Mountain Public Health Training Center (RMPHTC)
  • The Health Education and Resource Institute (THEARI)

Featured by Deloitte:

The Collaborative and 2023 Colorado Blueprint for Innovative Public Health Workforce Development were featured in a 2024 report by Deloitte highlighting bright spots in the public health workforce and strategies for continued advancement and resilience.

What the pandemic can teach us about building a resilient public health workforce
Read Deloitte’s Public Health Workforce Report

Join Us in Building the Future Generation of Public Health Workers in Colorado

Together, over 20 statewide members developed RESTORE: The Colorado Blueprint for Innovative Workforce Development.  The blueprint is a tool providing strategies and resources for building a diverse, skilled, and sustained public health workforce that reflects Colorado communities.

The Blueprint provides a fillable action plan template for employers to engage in four focus areas of workforce development. These focus areas prioritize equitable recruitment, retention, career pathways, and useful data for the future of the public and environmental health workforce.

 RESTORE: The Colorado Blueprint for Innovative Workforce Development
Download the Blueprint
Download the Blueprint Fact Sheet