Chronic Disease Affects 35% of Fresno County Residents
Thirty-five percent of Fresno County residents are affected by chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, obesity and asthma, compared with 30% of the population nationwide, according to a study released last week by Healthy Fresno, the Fresno Bee reports.
For the study, researchers analyzed data from several health studies conducted since 1994. The studies focused on access to care, patient behavior, prevalence of diseases and the use of health care services among patients.
The study found that four out of five families in the region are affected by chronic disease. In addition, chronic diseases in the Fresno area cost more than $2 billion per year in health care expenditures, lost productivity and disability payments.
Healthy Fresno -- a pilot program comprising a coalition of local governments, private businesses and individuals -- aims to reduce the rate of chronic diseases in the area by offering no-cost health assessments, informational meetings and discounts at local businesses. Residents can access the health assessments online or through a toll-free telephone number (Boyles, Fresno Bee, 6/3).