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IHRSA Briefs Capitol Hill on the Power of Prevention

IHRSA attended a briefing on Capitol Hill late last week that discussed whether or not public health investments could help prevent chronic disease and reduce escalating health care costs. The event was sponsored by the Alliance for Health Reform and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. According to the Alliance for Health Reform, who moderated the discussion, compared to expanding insurance coverage and improving quality of care, expanding community and behavioral prevention saved the most money and the most lives. 

“Community prevention was the ONLY intervention that saved lives and money in the long run to the tune of four and a half million lives and nearly $600 billion over 25 years,” the Alliance said in a statement.

“Diabetes and other chronic illnesses can be prevented or greatly delayed with solutions beyond or outside of medical care. Many fall into the category of health-related behaviors, such as whether we smoke, get exercise, eat a healthy diet—factors that are newly falling into the spheres of public health or population health,” the Alliance added.

Representatives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the New York City Department of Mental Hygiene, the Tobacco-Free Kids Campaign and the Congressional Budget Office all spoke at the briefing.

>> For copies of the above-mentioned presentations and a transcript of the briefing, visit the Alliance for Health Reform’s event page.

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