UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital
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Employer Spotlight: UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital

Life feels different when you’re living in Denver, CO. Golf balls go 10% further, and the sun feels warmer thanks to the city’s mile-high elevation. Healthcare professionals are drawn to this area for its many adventure activities and the ability to strike the perfect work-life balance. Home to the top hospital in Colorado, UCHealth University of Colorado, it’s no wonder many nurses and allied health professionals choose to live and work here. Explore this employer spotlight and learn what makes this hospital a desired workplace.

Overview of UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital

The University of Colorado Hospital (UCH), formerly known as Colorado General Hospital, was founded in 1921. In 2012, in an effort to combine community-based care and academic medicine, Poudre Valley Health System and the University of Colorado Hospital merged to create UCHealth Systems (FKA University of Colorado Health). According to its website, UCHealth employs over 30,000 people, with 12 locations throughout Colorado and affiliated sites in Wyoming and Nebraska. UCHealth Systems is a not-for-profit organization recognized by Forbes in 2021 as the No.1 employer in Colorado.

Located in Aurora, Denver’s largest suburb, UCH is one of the leading hospitals in the nation. It has 653 beds and is the primary teaching hospital for the University of Colorado School of Medicine. UCH is a general medical-surgical facility offering acute care, family medicine and many specialty clinics and programs. The following buildings and clinics make up the UCH campus:

  • Anschutz Inpatient Pavilion 
  • Anschutz Inpatient Pavilion 2 
  • Anschutz Outpatient Pavilion 
  • Anschutz Cancer Pavilion
  • Sue Anschutz-Rogers Eye Center

Mission, Vision and Principles

UCH focuses on the health of individuals, with its primary values being “Patients first – Integrity – Excellence.” It takes an upstream approach to healthcare, focusing on individual needs and health, which improves patient outcomes. According to the UCHealth website, its mission is to “improve lives. In big ways through learning, healing and discovery. In small, personal ways through human connection.”

Awards, Honors and Accreditations 

UCH is one of the leading medical facilities in Denver and the country. According to the U.S. News & World Report, it ranked as the No. 1 hospital in Colorado and the best Denver hospital in 2023-24. In 2021, UCH won first place in the Healthcare Innovator Awards program and has received Magnet Recognition numerous times from the American Nurses Credentialing Centers (ANCC) for excellence in nursing services.

According to the UCH website it provides, “medical outcomes above state averages in many areas.” UCH has a 27.2% higher survival rate and is in the top 25% for patient satisfaction compared to other U.S. hospitals.

Top Specialties at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital

UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital

According to U.S. News & World Report ratings for 2023-2024, UCH earned high-performing ratings in seven specialties and 17 procedures or conditions, as well as two national rankings. As a research facility, UCH offers cutting-edge advancements and treatments to meet its patients’ needs in many specialties. Some of those specialties include the following.

Pulmonology & Lung Surgery

With a program rooted in experience and research, UCH is ranked No. 6 in the nation for pulmonology and lung surgery. It offers an extensive list of treatments in this area including, but not limited to:

  • Advanced Lung Disease
  • Asthma
  • Bronchitis (Acute and Chronic)
  • COPD
  • Emphysema
  • Insomnia
  • Interstitial Lung Disease
  • Lung Cancer
  • Lung Cancer Screening
  • Narcolepsy

Diabetes & Endocrinology

UCH offers a specialized Diabetes & Endocrinology Unit in its Anschutz clinic, which ranks 26th nationally for the best care in this area of expertise. It offers a wide range of services, including a highly specialized program to assist those newly diagnosed with diabetes through nutrition and other management strategies. Other conditions they’re well known for treating are:

  • Menopause
  • Osteoporosis
  • Pancreatitis
  • Pituitary Tumors
  • Thyroid Conditions

Gastroenterology & GI Surgery

It’s considered high-performing nationally as one of the leading hospitals for conditions of the liver, digestive health and pancreas. Gastroenterology care at UCH is highly esteemed in the Rocky Mountain region for its access to a wide range of specialty treatments. 

Working at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital

UCH is as dedicated to employee satisfaction as it is to patient satisfaction. It’s always looking for like-minded healthcare professionals to join its team. On its website, it requests people to apply who are “talented, inspired and up for a challenge—those who don’t shy away from big emotional investments and daily opportunities to improve lives.”

According to employee reviews, UCH is a great place for staff nursing jobs in Aurora, with slightly higher staff nurse salaries than the national average. Boasting 2:1 patient ratios will excite any nurse, and 130 Vivian users have verified that UCH has this ratio. Holding international recognition with Magnet status for many years further confirms its dedication to its staff and nursing excellence. The many teaching opportunities, cutting-edge research, educational opportunities and positive patient outcomes exemplify this dedication. UCH uses EPIC systems technology, which helps streamline the workload for nurses and allied health professionals.

Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives

UCHealth has a dedicated space on its website outlining how it strives for inclusion and non-biased diversity aimed at employees, visitors and patients. The health system makes it evident that its commitment to diversity and inclusion is unwavering. Besides the diversity and inclusivity action plan outlined on its website, it has a designated committee of working professionals ensuring this plan is adhered to and updated frequently. 

UCHealth has earned the following recognitions for employment diversity:

  • Certified Age-Friendly Employer
  • Top 10 Supplier Diversity Program a Military Friendly Award
  • Military Friendly Spouse Employer Award
  • Military Friendly Employer Award

Benefits and Other Perks

It’s important to know the benefits and perks offered at a facility before you start. UCHealth has different benefits for full-time and part-time employees. Per diem and travel nurses have their own advantages, but they’re excluded from employer benefit packages. The health system offers extensive health and wellness benefits to its employees. Packages and costs can differ depending on your needs. 

UCHealth offers some exciting incentives in addition to dental and health packages, including a generous sign-on bonus for eligible positions. Some of its unique offerings to employees include:

  • RN Night Shift Incentive Program (in addition to night shift differential pay)
  • Tuition reimbursement packages
  • Annual performance bonus
  • Pension plan, fully funded by UCHealth
  • High deductible plan for $0 (for all full-time employees and their families)

Nursing Programs

Nursing leadership / nurse manager jobs

UCH offers nursing programs through its affiliation with the University of Colorado College of Nursing. Through this partnership, the following educational opportunities are available:

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)
  • Accelerated BSN
  • Master of Science in Nursing
  • PhD in Nursing
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice
  • Nurse Anesthesia Program 

UCHealth New Graduate Nurse Residency Program 

Established in 2002 in partnership with the University of Colorado College of Nursing (CU-CON), the nurse residency program at UCHealth is the first nationally-accredited nurse residency program in the country.

The program aims to foster the supported growth of new nurses as they transition to independent practice as a registered nurse (RN). To be eligible for this program, applicants must have graduated from an accredited nursing school with a BSN within the last 12 months. 

Travel Nursing at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital

Boasting over 300 days of sunshine a year, it’s no wonder Denver attracts so many tourists and travel healthcare professionals. Offering vibrant urban living with a diverse cultural, music and art scene paired with plenty of outdoor adventures knocking at your doorstep Denver makes a great destination for your next Denver travel nursing job or travel allied health gig

In August 2023, Aurora’s overall cost of living was about 19%  higher than the national average, per Sperling’s Best Places, and the average Aurora travel nurse salary was 10% lower than in other Colorado cities based on Vivian’s data. However, travel contracts vary among specialties and travel nurses must sometimes weigh the experience and memories they’re making over the monetary compensation. Aurora delivers a much-needed work-life balance rarely found as a travel nurse, making it a desirable location for your next working adventure. 

Getting to Work

UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora offers free parking facilities for employees and visitors, making ride-sharing and carpooling popular options. In August 2023, there was a warning on its website about the increase in thefts within the Aurora and Denver area and told people to take caution when using the lots. 

Public transportation is available and convenient through the Regional Transportation District (RTD), offering bus, rail and light rail transit services throughout Denver and the surrounding cities. Commute times vary depending on where you live. Denver International Airport serves the area, facilitating long-distance travel for employees such as travel nurses. 

On-Campus and Nearby Amenities

If you’re working in UCH’s Anschutz medical campus area, The Garden View Cafe presents beautiful views of its flower garden and “Aurora” sculpture. Courtyard Cafe and Dazbog Coffee are also on the grounds, with ample food and beverages between the three establishments. These spots are wonderful for taking a break, escaping patients and coworkers for a bit and exhaling into the serene setting. While you’re there, grab a fresh pizza, deli sandwich, made-for-you coffee, frozen yogurt or various Grab & Go options. 

You may not have time on your break to venture off campus, but if you’re looking for a snack pre-shift or post-shift, consider these options along the southern border of the facility:

  • Caribou Coffee
  • Chipotle
  • Noodles and Company
  • Panera Bread
  • Smashburger
  • Starbucks
  • Which Wich
  • IHOP
Contact Information 

UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital
12605 East 16th Avenue
Aurora, CO 80045
(720) 848-0000

Explore Vivian’s career tools and the ample job opportunities at this and other premier medical facilities in and around Denver, Colorado.

Amanda Farquharson, BSN, RN

Amanda Farquharson, BSN, RN is a registered nurse, travel nurse, writer and wellness warrior. She practices from a holistic lens with a focus on health promotion and prevention. Amanda has been actively engaged with the wellness community for over 15 years, supporting and developing activities that strengthen individuals' and communities' emotional, mental, spiritual and physical health.

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