U.S. Department of Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced $250 million in new Affordable Care Act investments to support prevention activities and develop the nation’s public health infrastructure.
Chronic diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes, are responsible for seven of 10 deaths each year among Americans, and account for 75% of the nation’s health spending, according to information in a press release.
“Investing in prevention and public health builds the foundation for improving the health and well-being of Americans, and for lowering costs in the health care system,” Sebelius stated in a the release. “Investing in proven preventive services will help patients get the care they need early, avoiding costly and unnecessary care later. This prevention-focused approach is better for doctors, patients, and our national balance sheet.”
The $250 million investment in prevention and public health will go to:
- Community and Clinical Prevention: $126 million will support federal, state and community prevention initiatives; the integration of primary care services into publicly funded community-based behavioral health settings; obesity prevention and fitness; and tobacco cessation;
- Public Health Infrastructure: $70 million will support state, local, and tribal public health infrastructure and build state and local capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease outbreaks;
- Research and Tracking: $31 million for data collection and analysis; to strengthen CDC’s Community Guide by supporting the Task Force on Community Preventive Services; and to improve transparency and public involvement in the Clinical Preventive Services Task Force; and
- Public Health Training: $23 million to expand CDC’s public health workforce programs and public health training centers.