Department of Health and Exercise Science to Help Medically Underserved with Caring for Colorado Grant

Colorado State University’s Department of Health and Exercise Science will be able to continue providing access to the Heart Disease Prevention Program for a portion of the medically underserved adult population of Larimer County. The program is being made possible by a $50,000 grant renewal from the Caring for Colorado Foundation.

Medically underserved people are those who have no, or inadequate, access to health services due to limited financial resources, lack of health insurance or language/cultural barriers.

The Heart Disease Prevention Program at Colorado State, which is a comprehensive screening program for heart disease, is the primary outreach program of the Human Performance Clinical/Research Laboratory, a 6,000-square-foot teaching, research and outreach facility outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment.    

Cardiovascular disease is the No. 1 cause of death in the United States. Many aspects of this disease are preventable; however, without access to screening and prevention services, the medically underserved are unable to improve preventable risk factors such as obesity and low fitness levels. The Heart Disease Prevention Program, in the College of Applied Human Sciences at Colorado State, strives to provide affordable cardiovascular disease prevention services to citizens of Larimer County and the state of Colorado.

This project will continue to enable a portion of the medically underserved population of Larimer County to gain access to this proven cardiovascular disease risk-reduction program free of charge.

"We are thrilled to have received additional funding from the Caring for Colorado Foundation," said Gay Israel, head of the Department of Health and Exercise Science and executive director of the Human Performance Clinical/Research Laboratory at Colorado State. "We are committed to improving lives through education and outreach, and this grant allows us to empower people to positively impact their personal health status by reducing their risk for cardiovascular disease and promoting by example healthy lifestyles in their families and communities."

Collaborators in the project include the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment, Health District of Northern Larimer County, Poudre Valley Health System, Family Medicine Center, Salud Family Health Center, Family Clinic of Fort Collins, Heart Center of the Rockies and other community primary care providers who treat the underserved. These partners have been involved from the beginning of the project in assisting with selection and referral criteria, as well as structuring and providing post-evaluation case management. Other local foundations helping to support this project financially include the Poudre Valley Hospital Foundation and the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado.

Caring for Colorado Foundation’s vision is to ensure that the people of Colorado are the healthiest in the nation. Its mission is to promote and serve the health care needs of the citizens of Colorado.

Caring for Colorado Foundation believes in these core values:

–     All Coloradoans deserve quality health services.

–     Collaborative partnerships with communities strengthen the Foundation’s efforts.

–     Measuring outcomes is important for promoting long-term community health improvements.

For more information on the Caring for Colorado Foundation, visit the Web site at