Healthcare & Wellness

A healthy bottomline starts with healthy workers

The healthcare and wellness workforce continues to drive the region’s employment growth. Employment has increased every year since 2004, adding over 88,420 workers between 2004 and 2017. Over the past five years, employment in the region grew 24.1 percent, which was nearly double the U.S. growth rate of 10.7 percent. Between 2012 and 2017, the region added 43,250 healthcare and wellness jobs, accounting for 10 percent of the total job growth in the region over this period of time. With an employment base of over 222,700 workers in 21,160 companies, the healthcare and wellness cluster is the region’s largest cluster in terms of employment. 

Metro Denver Healthcare & Wellness Employment Snapshot U.S. data in ( )
Direct Employment 222,700
Companies 21,160
Five-Year Employment Growth (2012-2017) 24.1% (10.7%)
One-Year Employment Growth (2017) 3.8% (2.3%)
Direct Employment Concentration (2017) 9.6% (10.5%)
Average Wage $57,070
Employment Concentration Ranking (Among 50 largest metros) 34

The region is a top healthcare and wellness location, offering:

  1. A robust culture of health and wellness
    • Colorado ranked among the top 10 healthiest states in the nation and had the lowest prevalence of obesity and physical inactivity. (United Health Foundation, 2017)
    • Colorado ranked as the second-most physically active state in the nation with over 84 percent of adults participating in physical activity in the past month. (The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 2017)
    • Denver ranked second on Healthgrades’ National Health Index, a list of the 25 U.S. cities leading the way in healthcare. Healthgrades measured population health, access to care, risky behaviors, and hospital quality. (Healthgrades, 2017)
  2. The ability to recruit and retain a healthy, skilled, and productive workforce
    • Boulder has the lowest prevalence of diabetes in the nation, with 4.1 percent of its adult population diagnosed. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2017)
    • Boulder (first) and Fort Collins (10th) ranked among the top 10 “2017 Healthiest Cities in America.” (, 2017)
    • Nearly 40 percent of Coloradans have at least a bachelor’s degree, the second-highest college attainment rate in the nation behind Massachusetts. (U.S. Census Bureau, 2016 American Community Survey)
  3. The convergence of health-related education, research, and application
    The University of Colorado School of Medicine ranked 11th nationally for primary care, with the specialties of pediatrics (fourth), family medicine (fifth), and rural medicine (sixth) also ranking high. The School of Medicine ranked 35th for research. (U.S. News & World Report, 2016)

  4. A regional healthcare hub, with expanding medical and wellness tourism opportunities
    • The University of Colorado School of Medicine ranked eighth nationally for primary care, with the specialties of family medicine (third), pediatrics (sixth), and rural medicine (sixth) also ranking high. The School of Medicine ranked 35th for research. (U.S. News & World Report, 2017)
    • Regis University’s Master’s in Health Services Administration ranked among the top 10 best online programs. (Master Programs Guide, 2017)
    • The Red Rocks Community College Physician Assistant Program is the only master's degree-offering community college program in the U.S. (Red Rocks Community College, 2017)

It is this convergence of culture and commitment that has brought expansive growth to the healthcare and wellness cluster in Metro Denver. The center of much of this expansive growth is the Fitzsimons Innovation Campus and the adjacent Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora.

The 578-acre Fitzsimons campus will be the largest medical-related redevelopment in the nation along with the world’s only complete new research, education, and patient care complex. With two world-class research hospitals—the University of Colorado Hospital and Children's Hospital Colorado—the campus will total 18 million square feet and employ more than 44,000 people at full build out.

The Anschutz Medical Campus is the largest academic health center from Chicago to the West Coast and has a $5.4 billion annual economic impact to the state.