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Bipartisan Coalition Forms to Call for Chronic Disease to be Key Focus of Health Reform in Connecticut and Nationally
Date:4/8/2009

is tremendous. A study by the Milken Institute looked at seven common chronic diseases and found that in Connecticut, the total health care costs of these diseases amount to nearly $16.2 billion in 2003. The economic costs - in terms of productivity loss associated with poor health from these chronic diseases - amounted to more than $12.9 billion.

Speaking at today's press event was Candace DeMatteis, Public Policy Director for PFCD; Connecticut State Senator Paul R. Doyle, Majority Whip and Chairman of the Human Services Committee; David L. Katz, MD, Co-Chair of PFCD CT Chapter and Director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center; Samantha L. Heller, MS, RD, CDN Co-Chair of PFCD CT Chapter; Paul Bluestein, MD, Chief Medical Officer, ConnectiCare; and Daniel Torres, President, Latino American Chamber of Commerce of Connecticut.

"Any serious proposal to reform our health care system must address preventable chronic disease," said Dr. Katz. "Our state's premier business, labor, health care, faith, and community organizations are dedicated to making preventing and managing chronic diseases the number one health care priority for policymakers."

"The only way to achieve successful health reform is through a bipartisan approach and solutions to address this problem," said DeMatteis. "As Democrats and Republicans alike look at the impact chronic disease has on the federal budget, on employers and on individual households they must realize that the best way to stem rising costs is to stop incurring them in the first place - meaning we need strategies to get Americans healthy and help them stay healthy," she added.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), chronic diseases are responsible for seven out of every 10 deaths in the U.S. - killing more than 1.7 million Americans every year. Chronic diseases are also the primary driver of health care costs, accountin
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SOURCE Connecticut Chapter of the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
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