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Presidential Hopefuls Must Address Leading Cause of Death in U.S.

Prevention and better management of chronic diseases imperative for next administration
CONTACT: Jennifer Burke
301.801.9847
Jennifer.burke@fightchronicdisease.org

WASHINGTON, D.C. (October 7, 2015) The Partnership to Fight Chronic Diseasetoday called on all Presidential candidates to elevate chronic disease as the focus of their health care proposals. Chronic diseases, the leading cause of death and disability in the United States, are the number one cost driver in health care, now costing the U.S. more than 86 percent of the $2.9 trillion spent in health care. Rising health care costs cannot be effectively addressed without prioritizing chronic disease prevention and improved quality and coordination of care.
With half of all American adults struggling with at least one chronic condition, almost one in three living with two or more chronic conditions, and new patients diagnosed every day, it is clear that chronic diseases pose an unsustainable burden on our health care system. As each of the Presidential candidates assess and address the many issues on the table, the PFCD encourages candidates, on both sides of the aisle, to take a comprehensive look at how improving the nation’s health can alleviate financial challenges in our health care system, turnout a more productive workforce, and ultimately drive economic growth.

“Costly chronic conditions like diabetes, cancer and heart disease, impact every single American in some way, be it as a patient, survivor, caregiver, or loved one. It is our duty to command the attention of our elected leaders to the spectrum of issues that chronic disease presents and to advocate for policies that will bridge gaps in health care and create opportunities that promote and enable better overall health for our population,” urged PFCD Chairman Ken Thorpe.

With a focus on the upcoming election, the PFCD has announced its 2015 policy platform that details the pivotal issues in health care and could serve as a key resource for candidates. In the coming weeks, the PFCD will be re-engaging state chapters in Iowa, Nevada, and New Hampshire. More specifically, the PFCD will be working to challengepolicymakers to elevate the issue of chronic disease and to articulate how they will address the issue through their health care proposals; to educate the public about chronic disease and existing solutions and opportunities for individuals, communities, and the nation; and to mobilizeAmericans to call for change in how policymakers, governments, employers, health institutions, and other entities manage chronic disease.

“The viability and strength of our health care system going forward relies on a willingness to enact policies that help Americans better prevent and manage chronic illnesses,” continued Thorpe. “Efforts towards a long term impact in the fight against chronic disease cannot stop at just system reforms, but must also emphasize and embrace the value of prevention. Our next President must be keenly aware of the reliance our economy has on a healthy population.”

About The Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease
The Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease (PFCD) is an internationally-recognized organization 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: chronic disease.