Advanced Physicians Leadership Program (APLP)


APLP is a year-long program providing leadership and advocacy training to Colorado physicians. 

RIHEL has delivered APLP to multiple cohorts and we anticipate delivering it again in the future, but we have not determined when the next APLP will be held. 


RIHEL works in close partnership with the Colorado Medical Society to deliver the Advanced Physicians Leadership Program or APLP. The inaugural year-long course concluded in 2012 and was funded by the Colorado Trust. The second cohort graduated in 2015 and was supported by the Physicians Foundation and the Colorado Health Foundation

The purpose of the APLP is to advance physician capacity to lead and collaborate in order to improve health care. Many elements of the APLP are similar to RIHEL’s flagship Advanced Leadership Training Program. The 56 contact hours are arranged in four weekend retreats to minimize the opportunity costs for the participants. Physician participants learn advanced concepts about leadership, teamwork, collaboration and collaborative leadership, difficult conversations, and systems thinking, among others. There is a strong emphasis on emotional intelligence. Physicians are assigned volunteer peer coaches from among RIHEL’s graduates, and coaching conversations are held monthly. The program is limited to Colorado’s physicians, and the doctors conduct leadership projects that focus on health issues in Colorado.

“Thanks so very much for this amazing opportunity.  This has probably been the best class I have ever been a part of!”
“I found inspiration on action and common values in 40 other physicians in the program—learning from their stories, concerns, efforts to improve.”

APLP Class of 2015

The Colorado Medical Society (CMS) and RIHEL teamed up to deliver this year-long program tailored for Colorado physicians. The first class in this program was funded by The Colorado Trust through their Building Public Will to Achieve Access to Health initiative, Project Health Colorado, with the purpose of the program to encourage physician leaders to champion expanded and sustained access to health by advocating that the people within their sphere of influence become involved in decisions about health in Colorado.

Physicians hold implicit positions and voices of authority in our society. The access to health messages of The Colorado Trust’s initiative will be weighted heavily if they are delivered by physicians. The video below provides a sampling of APLP participants sharing their thoughts about access to health in Colorado along with an invitation to their peers to join the dialogue.

APLP Access to Health

Members of the Advanced Physician Leadership Program Class of 2012,
share their thoughts about access to health in Colorado and invite their peers to join the dialogue.

In June 2012, the inaugural class of the Advanced Physicians Leadership Program (APLP) graduated,
with all participants reporting that they would recommend this program to a colleague.

“There are few opportunities for physicians to learn about leadership in such a positive and collegial environment. The exercises, reading and information presented provided a unique learning environment that was critical to conveying the complex concepts of leadership.”

APLP Retreat Summary

A group of Coloradans met in 2013. They were physicians, medical students and public health professionals who focus on the health care workforce. They considered data about health in Colorado, engaged in discussions about the way forward, and explored ways that the voice of physicians could leverage a healthier future for Colorado.

The group concluded that the health of a community is only as healthy as its children. Colorado may be one of the healthiest states in the nation, but this will not continue judging by the current health of our children, which is mediocre at best.

One man talking
Two women listening and looking in one direction.
Woman holding her hand to her chin and listening.
Three people sitting around a table and listening.

The members present declared “support for the Governor of Colorado’s “State of Health” platform and encourage other health professional organizations to also declare their support for this plan; endeavor to collaborate with other health professionals – knowledgeable in the unique health concerns of our communities – on improving health outcomes; and endeavor to specifically work toward a goal of access to health and healthcare, including behavioral health for all children, in our communities and in our state.”

View a PDF of this summary report.
The State of Health Summary (pdf).

Questions Regarding APLP?

Please contact RIHEL through the form below or call us at 303.871.2097

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