Chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, are among the leading causes of death in Maryland and currently account for 75 percent of health care costs. Fortunately, the majority of chronic disease cases can be prevented. Eighty percent of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes can be prevented through proper nutrition, physical activity, and not smoking.
The mission of the Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control (The Center) is to improve the health of Maryland residents by promoting healthy lifestyles that will reduce chronic disease.
The Center focuses its efforts in four areas, which align with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Four Domains for Chronic Disease Prevention:
Epidemiology and Surveillance
In an effort to monitor trends, track progress, and advise action, The Center collaborates with partners to conduct the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System and the Youth Risk Behavior Surveys, among others, and publishes reports and fact sheets to be used by partners and by the general public.
There is substantial evidence to support the impact that environmental factors have on health behaviors and overall health outcomes. The Center works with partners in the community, school, childcare, and healthcare settings to promote healthy lifestyles and prevent chronic disease.
Health Care Systems Interventions
Improved care can facilitate prevention, early diagnosis, and quality management of chronic diseases. The Center is working to transform health systems by implementing health and data systems changes, and leveraging public and private payer financial incentives and reimbursement models.
Community Clinical Links
In an effort to improve the quality of the lives of those living with chronic diseases, self-management care must be integrated between healthcare and community settings. The Center collaborates with a variety of different partners to facilitate practitioner referrals and support the provision of chronic disease self-management programs, and other local classes.
Although there are many chronic diseases the Center works to prevent, there is greater focus and nationwide attention on the prevention and management of diabetes and heart disease. The Center is also responsible for convening the State Advisory Council on Health and Wellness, as well as supporting the Virginia I. Jones Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Council.