Chronic Disease: The need for Focus, Innovation and Care
After rising steadily for decades, U.S. life expectancy has flat-lined for three consecutive years, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The study also finds that chronic conditions like heart disease, cancer, stroke and kidney disease remain among the leading causes of death in the United States. Our country requires a new strategy for improving the health and longevity of Americans. In particular, our leaders need to focus on reforms aimed at combating chronic diseases through prevention, medical innovation and improved access to care. By elevating these three priorities, policymakers can help make 2016 the beginning of the end of America's chronic disease crisis.Chronic conditions represent the single largest threat to health in America. According to the CDC's latest statistics, roughly half of all adults suffer from at least one chronic disease, with a quarter of all adults suffering from two or more. In 2014, seven chronic conditions were responsible for nearly 65 percent of all deaths.