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Reducing Chronic Diseases Critical to Economic Recovery and Health Reform
Date:5/14/2009

WASHINGTON, May 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An obese 70-year-old will spend approximately 20 percent more on health care over their lifetime - nearly $40,000 - than a peer of normal weight, according to the second annual Almanac of Chronic Disease, released today by the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease (PFCD).

The Almanac is a comprehensive resource that outlines the critical role that preventing and reducing chronic diseases can have on health care reform, economic stability and the health of all Americans. Research highlights from the Almanac's include:

  • During 2007, the U.S. spent an estimated $1.7 trillion treating patients with one or more chronic conditions - the equivalent of 34 million annual salaries of $50,000.
  • Since the mid-1980s, about two-thirds of the increase in spending on health care in the United States is linked to the rise in the prevalence of treated chronic diseases; about one-third is linked to the doubling of obesity rates.
  • Chronic disease and treatment rates are higher in the United States than in other industrialized nations, and may add as much as $100 to $150 billion in treatment costs to U.S. health spending.

"We need to address the sad reality that 75 cents of every dollar we spend on health care in our nation is to treat people suffering from a chronic disease," said PFCD National Chairperson Richard H. Carmona, M.D., M.P.H., FACS, 17th U.S. Surgeon General (2002-2006), President of the non-profit Canyon Ranch Institute. "The scientific evidence in the Almanac is clear. The health of our nation and our economy will only improve when we move from a 'sick-care' system focused on treating chronic diseases to a true health care system devoted to prevention and wellness. The hundreds of PFCD partners who come from all sectors of American society are leading the way t
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SOURCE Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease
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