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A review of the public health movement in Colorado for the past fifty years reveals a kaleidoscope of events which had a significant impact on the health of Colorado citizens. Many of the challenges that faced public health and the Association in 1938 were met successfully. The people of Colorado are generally healthier and living longer. The Association is strong and active. However, new challenges and opportunities await both.

Everyone recognizes that a healthy mind in a healthy body is a desirable goal. Significant advances were made in the field of genetics and even those with impairments may now be able to minimize the consequences of imperfections by medical means, often preventive in nature. Surgical procedures can often repair defective hearts and other body parts. There are medicines for the control of diabetes and allergic disorders. Physical therapy may improve mobility adding immeasurably to the quality of life and to the capacity to be self sufficient. The screening of newborns for PKU and other metabolic disorders has resulted in savings of millions of dollars by averting lifelong institutional care for he mentally retarded victims of these diseases.

Looking back over the past fifty years, the accomplishments have been considerable. Most of these accomplishments are not the direct result of CPHA’s existence. They have often been the accomplishments of CPHA’s members in their public health positions. CPHA has influenced those members, who in turn have influenced others – including public decision makers.

COLORADO – Denver Health

•1876: Colorado becomes a state.
•1876-1881: Dr. Harrison Lemen is county physician and oversees the County Hospital.
•1879-1880: First typhoid epidemic strikes Denver.
•1881: Fight between homeopaths and allopaths over control of Arapahoe County Hospital.
•1884: The county’s first Poor Farm, consisting of 220 acres, opens near the Globe Smelting Company.
•1887: Dr. Herbert McLauthlin elected county physician at a salary of $2,400 per year. Later he was made head of the city’s Department of Health.
•1887: The Colorado Training School for Nurses opens.
•1888: Augusta Erickson is the first graduate of The Colorado Training School for Nurses.
•1889: A new Nurse’s Home is built. Costing roughly $30,000, it’s a three-story brick structure with a long sun porch.
•1889: Patient census is 91

Denver Health is a comprehensive, integrated organization with multiple components. Go to http://denverhealth150.org/History.aspx