The epidemic of chronic illness – which represents 75 percent of the $2 trillion in annual U.S. health care spending – is steadily moving toward crisis proportions, yet maintaining or enhancing quality of life for individuals living with these illnesses has not been given the attention it deserves. Longevity is no longer the only goal as more focus is placed on living a long and healthy life.
The CDC and the nonprofit Arthritis Foundation asked the IOM to help identify ways to reduce disability and improve the function and quality of life for people living with chronic illness. The report lays out a comprehensive framework intended as a guide to develop and implement cross-cutting strategies that reduce the individual and societal burdens of chronic illness by helping people with chronic illnesses live well. The IOM makes recommendations to the CDC as well as HHS on the development and support of programs to meet the health and social needs of people living with chronic illnesses.