Colorado Hospital and Community Data and Reports

CHA provides various summarized hospital and community data and reporting to researchers, consumers, health care organizations, and other interested parties. The data represents Colorado hospitals’ commitment to increasing transparency in health care. CHA also supports researchers and other third parties with more detailed data requests

For more information, contact Krista Smith, CHA manager of data quality and security, at 720.330.6064.

Colorado Hospital Utilization Summary Data

CHA has summarized hospital utilization data in an effort to provide consumers, health care organizations, and other interested parties with timely and comparative hospital metrics. The information comes from CHA’s DATABANK, an online database program that collects self-reported hospital utilization and financial data from participating hospitals on a monthly basis.  

Licensed Beds: Refers to the maximum number of beds that a licensure agency, such as the state or other governing body, allows a hospital or health facility to operate at any given time. These numbers are reported by hospitals every month. This figure is an average for the reporting period.

Total Discharges: An inpatient discharge is the formal release of a patient (includes patients admitted and discharged the same day) and the termination of the hospital lodging. For the DATABANK Program, a mother and her newborn baby count as one discharge if they are discharged at the same time. When a baby remains at the hospital beyond the mother’s discharge (a.k.a.. a “boarder baby”), one discharge is counted when the mother is released and another discharge is counted when the baby is released. If a patient is discharged from an acute care unit and transferred to another care setting, such as a swing bed, there would be a count for acute discharge and another discharge from swing bed when that occurs. Total discharges include acute care, swing bed1, sub-acute/long-term care and distinct-part unit2.

Patient Days: A patient day is a unit of measure that represents lodging provided and services rendered to inpatients between the census-taking hours (usually at midnight) of two successive days. A patient formally admitted to a hospital who is discharged or dies on the same day is counted as one patient day, regardless of the number of hours the patient occupies a hospital bed. This includes acute care, swing bed, sub-acute/long-term care and distinct-part unit. Newborn patient days are excluded.

Births: The sum of the number of live births in the hospital during the reporting period, including cesarean deliveries. Fetal deaths and infants transferred from other facilities are excluded.

Emergency Department Visits: The total number of patients seen in an emergency unit who are not later admitted as inpatients.

Total Outpatient Visits: Total number of outpatient visits reported during the reporting period, including emergency room visits, ambulatory surgery visits, observation visits, home health visits and all other visit types.

Inpatient Surgeries: The number of operations performed on inpatients, (i.e., those who remain in the hospital between two census taking hours — usually at midnight — of two successive days.) This number represents each patient undergoing surgery and is counted as one surgical operation, regardless of the number of surgical procedures that were performed while the patient was in the operating or procedure rooms. This also includes cesarean deliveries.

Inpatient Admissions from the Emergency Department: The total number of Inpatient Admissions from the Emergency Room during the reporting period.

1 Swing-beds: Refers to an agreement under the Social Security Act that permits certain small, rural hospitals to enter into a “swing bed agreement,” under which hospitals can use its beds, as needed, to provide either acute- or Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF)-level care.

2 Distinct-Part Unit: A portion of an institution or institutional complex that is certified to provide Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) or Nursing Facility (NF) services. A distinct part must be physically distinguishable from the larger institution and fiscally separate for cost reporting purposes.

Colorado Hospital Price Report

The Colorado Hospital Price Report is a joint project between CHA and the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies, Division of Insurance (DOI). This website gives consumers and purchasers of health care services more information about average hospital charges and average reimbursement rates paid by insurance companies or health maintenance organizations. The report includes the 25 most common inpatient medical conditions and surgical procedures performed by hospitals.

The DOI also makes a price report available by diagnosis or insurance provider – view the DOI’s price report here

The pricing information displayed here is representative of hospitals charges. If you have insurance, you will also be interested in the amount you will be responsible for – coinsurance (the amount of covered charges you are responsible for) and deductibles (the amount you must pay before the insurance company begins to pay). The actual charges on the statement you receive from the hospital will vary from the charges reported here. And what you actually will be responsible for paying will depend on your insurance policy and factors such as whether you have satisfied your insurance plan’s deductible, the amount of charges your plan does not cover, etc. If you do not have insurance, contact the hospital and ask them about their payment policies. Hospitals have charity care policies for patients who qualify.

The information presented here should be considered a starting point when comparing the cost of care between hospitals.

Here are some other things to remember:

  • Physician charges are not included. You will receive a separate bill from your personal physician, and may receive a bill from a radiologist if you had x-rays or other radiology procedures; from a pathologist if you had surgery or other lab tests performed; or from the emergency department (ED) physician if you were treated in the ED. Your surgeon and anesthesiologist will also send you a separate bill. Those charges are not included in the information displayed on this web site.
  • Practice decisions vary from physician to physician, and collectively may explain some differences in charges and outcomes across facilities.
  • Severity of illness and intensity of care may vary. Patients within the same diagnosis or procedure category may need very different levels of service and staff attention, causing a variation in charges.
  • Current charges and outcomes may be different than those displayed here. The information presented is a snapshot of the data from the most recently available 12-month time period.
  • Some reasons why charges may differ among facilities:
    • The equipment facilities use to provide services differs in age and frequency of use and may impact the charges of the hospital.
    • Salary scales may differ by region and are typically higher in urban areas than in rural areas.
    • Shortages of nurses and other medical personnel may affect regions differently. Where shortages are more severe, staffing costs, and, therefore charges, may be higher.
    • Facilities differ in their approach to pricing based on operational costs. Some facilities try to spread the cost of all services and equipment among all patients. Others establish charges for specific services based on the cost to provide each specific service. Some facilities may provide certain services at a loss while other facility operations subsidize the losses. Any of these situations can result in significantly different charges among hospitals for a given type of service.
  • Charges shown are the facility’s billed charges. Patients rarely are required to pay the full charges. Actual amounts paid are usually less.

The information shown here is based on Diagnosis Related Groups (DRGs). A DRG is a grouping of diagnoses which represent similar – but not the same – diseases, and the resources provided to care for patients with similar diseases. For example, there is more than one DRG for pneumonia; that is, a patient may group into a different pneumonia DRG depending on the type and severity of the pneumonia and the resources necessary to treat it.

SPECIAL NOTE: Medicaid newborns are not included in this report, due to claims reporting process.

Colorado Hospital Report Card

CHA has officially handed oversite for the Colorado Hospital Report Card and Nursing Measures to CDPHE (for hospitals >100 beds only)

  • No further data will be submitted to CHA
  • The Practice Environment Scale (PES) requirement has been removed from the legislation (no longer a requirement)
  • CDPHE Contact: Peter Myers, deputy division director, [email protected]