Chronic Disease

man and two children on bikesAmericans are living longer, but chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease and cancer are taking a growing toll on our health.

Yet this leading cause of death is also one of the most preventable. Public health aims to help reduce people's risk factors by promoting physical activity, improving access to healthy, affordable foods and expanding science-based ways to kick the tobacco habit.

Healthy community design is one proven strategy to help prevent chronic disease. APHA supports the Partnerships to Improve Community Health, a three-year CDC initiative that supports implementation of evidence-based strategies to improve the health of communities and reduce the prevalence of chronic disease. 

Over the last year, APHA has been working with the American Planning Association to support and implement the Plan4Health project (funded through PICH). APHA Affiliates are collaborating with APA Chapters to address physical activity and nutritious eating at the local level – the nontraditional, cross-sector partnership is helping to embed the culture of health in planning. Read the letter APHA joined in support of PICH. (PDF) 

We also support the Helping Ensure Life- and Limb-Saving Access to Podiatric Physicians Act, which would help to improve coordination of care for Medicare’s Therapeutic Shoe Program for patients with diabetes. Read APHA's letter of support. (PDF)

The Prevention and Public Health Fund supports federal programs that are essential for diabetes prevention, including the National Diabetes Prevention Program, Diabetes Self-Management Education, State and Local Public Health Actions Program. Read this Senate DC letter with details on these programs. (PDF) 

More About Chronic Disease smiling boy holding apple

Physical Inactivity Among Adults Aged 50 Years and Older- United States, 2014 (MMWR)

U.S. Health Rankings Released, Hawaii ranked highest (The Nation's Health  cover story)

Halted progress against diabetes, other diseases linked to rise in deaths among middle-aged whites (The Commonwealth Fund)

Chronic Disease Drives Costs (PDF)

Obesity as a Major Risk Factor (infographic)

Diabetes Prevention Fact Sheet (PDF)

Chronic Disease ROI Fact Sheet (PDF)

Building Healthier Communities

Tobacco Prevention and Control

More Chronic Disease Resources

Building a Culture of Health: Lessons Learned From Global Efforts (PDF, case study on childhood obesity)

America's Health Rankings

A Practitioner’s Guide for Advancing Health Equity: Community Strategies for Chronic Disease Prevention (PDF)