This letter first appeared in the Greeley Tribune.

I write to commend State Representative Perry Buck for her leadership on health care issues in the Colorado legislature. For the past several years, Perry sponsored bills to further the economic and wellbeing of rural areas by increasing medical capacity and the number of practitioners serving in rural communities.

As designed, the program incentivizes rural primary care preceptors, doctors, nurses, and dentists who mentor students interested in practicing medicine in rural areas. The goal of this program is to ultimately increase the number of primary care providers in rural Colorado.

These health care professionals provide on-site clinical education and nurture students’ professional development.

Colorado is only the third state in the country to adopt this innovative program. Perry Buck has shown great insight in promoting this private sector solution to address challenges faced in rural health care.

As we confront COVID-19 and other diseases it is comforting to know leaders like Perry Buck are willing to seek out experts, craft innovative programs, and to be bold enough to collaboratively bring together consensus to lead in these unprecedented healthcare times. Perry unites other policy makers because she listens and focuses on practical, common ground solutions.

Perry’s leadership with the preceptor bill as well as sponsorship of bills on telehealth medicine and interstate compacts have today strengthened our current and future Colorado healthcare workforce. These efforts have supported healthcare providers in their mission to keep all areas of Colorado safe.

Perry will be sorely missed when she leaves the legislature at the end of this year. Your hard work has made a real difference for those of us who live in rural communities.

Monica Daniels-Mika, Eaton