Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A New Mission To Fight Chronic Disease

“As 17th surgeon general of the United States, I made every decision based on the knowledge that the strength of our great nation is in the good health of its people. Maryland is one of our nation's leading states when it comes to health research and health care, but it has one of the largest chronic disease burdens in the country: more than 3 million cases and more than $25 billion every year in combined treatment costs and lost productivity. That's why it's so important that a coalition has been formed in Maryland to join 14 other states in the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease (PFCD). I am honored to participate in the Maryland launch of the PFCD in Baltimore Tuesday at the Inner Harbor. The PFCD is a national and state-based coalition with hundreds of partner organizations representing patients, providers, community organizations, business and labor groups and health policy experts. We are working together to urge our nation's leaders to realign incentives in the health care system to encourage chronic disease prevention and management. One of our primary goals is to ensure that President Barack Obama and Congress make controlling chronic disease an important part of any health reform effort. Earlier this year, PFCD partners developed "Principles for Meaningful Health Reform," which outlined what we view as the most critical components of health care reform. Topping this list are strategies such as incentives for health care quality improvements, elimination of health disparities, promotion of community health intervention, and translating ‘best practices’ research into action.”


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