Colorado 5 Million Lives Campaign
2007 to 2009

Over 40,000 incidents of medical harm occur in the United States every day, making medical errors the fifth leading cause of death nationwide, according to the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI). To help implement and strengthen systems and safeguards that prevent such problems as hospital-acquired infections, adverse drug events, surgical errors, pressure ulcers and other medical complications, IHI launched the national 5 Million Lives Campaign to prevent five million incidents of harm over two years. More than 3,000 hospitals nationwide voluntarily enlisted to participate in the campaign.

Building on the successful Colorado 100k Lives Campaign, The Colorado Trust supported the Colorado 5 Million Lives Campaign to help hospitals across the state further strengthen their quality improvement systems, ensuring safe patient care. Fifty-four of Colorado's acute care hospitals were awarded grants over an 18-month period to participate in the campaign. Grants from The Trust also supported an additional five hospitals to participate in the campaign's educational programs and technical assistance trainings.

The Colorado 5 Million Lives Campaign helped hospitals adopt up to 12 interventions to improve care, including rapid response at the first sign of patient decline, making certain that patients receive the right medications at every transfer point in care, adherence to best practices known to prevent heart attacks and ventilator-associated pneumonia, reduction of infections and drug-resistant staph, reduction of pressure ulcers and engaging hospital leadership into patient safety efforts.

To help implement the interventions, the Colorado Foundation for Medical Care – the state's health care quality improvement organization – developed educational events and provided other assistance to participating hospitals. As components of this technical assistance, the Colorado Rural Health Center worked with participating rural hospitals to address patient safety issues, and SE2 helped hospitals to develop communications that support the sustainability of interventions among staff and patients. Additionally, the Colorado Hospital Association worked with participating hospitals' CEOs and boards to provide related professional development and leadership training.

Given that the fastest growing demand for technology simulation learning is driven by health care quality improvement efforts, The Trust also awarded a grant to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment – which founded the Work, Education and Lifelong Learning Simulation (WELLS) Center – to support the development of simulation scenarios that help health care providers to build clinical knowledge and skills in any medical situation. The WELLS Center is the first training facility in the country to integrate the use of the Virtual Human Dissector and datacasting with human patient mannequins.

Marcy Cameron, Project Coordinator, Colorado Foundation for Medical Care, 303-695-3350


  • Aspen Valley Hospital
  • Avista Adventist Hospital
  • Boulder Community Hospital
  • Community Hospital – Grand Junction
  • Craig Hospital Foundation
  • Denver Health
  • East Morgan County Hospital
  • Estes Park Medical Center
  • Exempla Good Samaritan Medical Center
  • Exempla Lutheran Medical Center
  • Exempla Saint Joseph Hospital
  • Family Health West
  • Haxtun Hospital District
  • Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center
  • Keefe Memorial Hospital
  • Kremmling Memorial Hospital District
  • Lincoln Community Hospital
  • Littleton Adventist Hospital
  • Longmont United Hospital
  • Medical Center of the Rockies
  • Melissa Memorial Hospital
  • Memorial Health System
  • Montrose Memorial Hospital
  • Mount San Rafael Hospital
  • Pagosa Mountain Hospital
  • Parker Adventist Hospital
  • Parkview Medical Center
  • Penrose-St. Francis Health Services
  • Platte Valley Medical Center
  • Porter Adventist Hospital
  • Prowers Medical Center
  • Rio Grande Hospital
  • Rose Medical Center
  • San Luis Valley Regional Medical Center
  • Sedgwick County Health Center
  • Sky Ridge Medical Center
  • Southeast Colorado Hospital/LTCC and Clinics
  • Southwest Memorial Hospital
  • Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center
  • St. Anthony Central Hospital
  • St. Anthony North Hospital
  • St. Anthony Summit Medical Center
  • St. Mary Corwin Medical Center
  • St. Mary's Hospital and Regional Medical Center
  • St. Thomas More Hospital
  • Sterling Regional MedCenter
  • The Children's Hospital
  • The Medical Center of Aurora
  • University of Colorado Hospital
  • Vail Valley Medical Center
  • Valley View Hospital
  • Wray Community District Hospital
  • Yampa Valley Medical Center
  • Yuma District Hospital

This is a statewide initiative.