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On Weekend Before the Election, New Jersey's First Ladies Speak Out for Healthcare
Date:11/1/2008

r citizens." Mrs. Florio serves as a spokesperson for the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute's Mayors Wellness Campaign.

"I saw first hand the impact of chronic disease neglect," said Dina Matos, who worked at both St. James and Columbus Hospitals in Newark. "If we do not take action to provide affordable and accessible health care to all of our citizens, a new crisis may very well be occupying the front pages of our newspapers on a daily basis in the months ahead."

Mrs. Codey, who has championed mental health issues nationwide, said, "There is no question that the mental health of Americans will suffer as a result of the financial anguish and strain they are realizing. Our elected officials need to come forward and tell us their plans for dealing with this new health care burden."

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, accounting for more than 75% of the $2 trillion dollars spent each year on health care in the United States.

The Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease (PFCD) is a national bipartisan coalition of patients, providers, community organizations, business and labor groups, and health policy experts committed to raising awareness of the number one cause of death, disability, and rising health care costs in the U.S.: chronic disease whose mission is to:

-- Challenge policymakers - in particular, the 2008 presidential candidates - to make the issue of chronic disease a top priority and articulate how they will address the issue through their health care proposals

-- Educate the public about chronic disease and potential solutions for individuals, communities, and the nation

-- Mobilize Americans to call for change in how policymakers, governments, employers, health institutions, and
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SOURCE Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease
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