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U.S. Heart Disease Costs Expected to Soar
Date:1/24/2011

nd other conditions. By 2030, that number will rise to 40.5 percent of the population, or about 116 million people, according to the report.

The biggest increases are thought to be in stroke, up 24.9 percent, and heart failure, up 25 percent.

Between 2010 and 2030, the cost of caring for patients with heart disease will go from $273 billion to $818 billion, the panel predicted.

In addition, heart disease will cost billions more in lost productivity, increasing from about $172 billion in 2010 to $276 billion in 2030. These losses include days missed from work or home tasks because of illness, plus lost earnings due to premature death.

"Cost of care will grow markedly unless we can either reduce the prevalence of cardiovascular disease or find less expensive ways to deliver current care," Heidenreich said.

"There are several targets for prevention including reduced salt intake and better control of risk factors -- for example, hypertension -- that would make an important impact if successful," he added.

Commenting on the policy statement, Dr. Gregg C. Fonarow, a professor of cardiology at the University of California, Los Angeles, said that "cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death of men and women in the United States, yet cardiovascular disease and many of these deaths could be prevented."

Fonarow suggested that "population-based strategies are urgently needed to improve cardiovascular health, prevent or delay the onset of cardiovascular disease, and help to address the projected rise in expenditures. Implementing effective health promotion and cardiovascular disease prevention needs to become a national priority," he said.

There are also a number of low-cost, high-value cardiovascular protective therapies that are available but are underutilized in routine clinical care that could also help to reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease, he added.

These include keeping blood pressure and choles
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