Average Age in US increases

Average Age in US increases

03.21.11 | By

This is another one of those "connect the dots" posts. There's good news out of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, they're reporting that U.S. death rates have fallen for the 10th year in a row. Average life expectancy in the U.S. at birth is now 78.2 years and up from 78 years since 2008.

The good news of people living longer, however, shouldn't obscure the health care challenges we face. For example, chronic diseases remain the leading cause of premature death in the U.S. and treating patients with chronic diseases accounts for around 75 cents of every health care dollar spent. Reaching people with potential chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, cancers and other conditions and helping them stay healthy is incredibly important to any effort designed to slow-down growing health care costs.

Similarly, so too is reaching people with a chronic condition and helping them better manage their conditions before broader health problems set in and that require the most expensive healthcare services - hospitalization, surgery, long-term nursing care, etc.

The Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease is a terrific resource for learning more about the impact of chronic diseases on health in America, and what can and should be done to help patients fight them. Living longer is great. But living longer and healthier is even better.

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