Rural Health Grants Available

Molly PereiraFeatured News

December 14, 2009

At least $1M is available in grant funding to medical, oral and mental health projects that improve primary care services for the underserved in rural areas of Colorado. The maximum award amount is $50,000 per applicant.

The Colorado Rural Health Care Grant Program is available to support the health infrastructure in Colorado’s rural communities. The funds are intended to support outpatient primary care, which are considered to be the basic, entry level care (medical, oral and mental) provided by clinicians. The Colorado Rural Health Care Grant Council was developed by Gov. Bill Ritter to provide oversight for this grant program.

$7.5M is available from 2008 through 2012. The Council awards a minimum of $1M per year through scheduled grant cycles. A total of $1,917,136.88 was awarded in 2008 and $1,207,863 in 2009. The funds are donated by United Health Group to help remedy deficiencies in access to healthcare for rural and underserved Coloradans.

For the purposes of this grant program, applicants must be located outside of Colorado’s Urbanized Areas (UAs). The U.S. Census defines a UA as “a central place(s) and adjacent territory with a general population density of at least 1,000 people per square mile of land area that together have a minimum residential population of at least 50,000 people.” Colorado currently has nine UAs: Boulder, Colorado Springs, Denver, Fort Collins, Grand Junction, Greeley, Longmont, Louisville and Pueblo. To determine whether or not an address is located outside of a UA, contact the Colorado Rural Health Center (CRHC) or visit

Grants will not be awarded for the delivery of direct healthcare services or to support operations or staffing. Grants will be funded for projects that support the rural health infrastructure and strengthen the capacity of rural entities to provide outpatient primary care services now and in the future. Infrastructure includes, but is not limited to: equipment, construction, physical plant improvements, vehicles and vehicle upgrades, information technology, and staff training or education.

The Request for Applications will be issued and available on Dec. 14, 2009 at The grant application deadline is March 11, 2010. Potential applicants will be asked to submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) by Jan. 22, 2010, stating their intent to apply, and briefly describing their entity and proposed project. For additional information, call Kent O’Connor at the Colorado Rural Health Center at 303-832-7493 or 800-851-6782.