Monday, December 15, 2008

Alzheimer Incidents rise

1/10 are under 60 years of age
500,000 Canadians have this disease
There is, indeed, a rise in dementia.

Chronic diseases are another issue that impacts the health care system.

Almost 80% of those over the age of 45 suffer from chronic disease
About 70% suffer from two chronic conditions

If these issues are not treated it presents a compounding of issues.
For example, diabetes, congestive heart failure, depression, asthma...
These diseases account for 29,000 emergency department visits, 67,300 hospitalizations, and $200 - 350 million annual health care costs.

Based on 1999 Long-Term Care data, nearly 30%

Most deaths can be prevented through quitting smoking, getting more exercise, and eating healthy foods. Early screening for many diseases would reduce the risks of cancers.

There are trends in diabetes.

We can prevent 90% of type 2 diabetes, 80% of coronary heart disease, and one-third of cancers by changing to a healthier diet, increasing physical exercise, and stopping smoking (WHO, 2003).

The Quality Improvement & Innovation Partnership website provides suggestions for Family Health Teams to help deliver quality health care in Ontario. They recommend web-based, easily accessible guidelines, tools, provider alerts, provider education, measurement, routine reporting, feedback and evaluation for health care providers.

They state that the benefits of electronic records, client registries, proactive monitoring, links, demographic information and providing information to patients will improve the delivery of services. No longer should we treat one symptom at a time, but look at the whole patient.

The recommend physical, social and community environments that encourage people to become more active, physically, psychologically and emotionally, to improve outcomes for those with potential chronic disease conditions. They want individuals and their families, to be a part of a team that manages and encourages self-management, with the health care provider as the guide on the side, not the sage on the stage. This is a notion taken from institutions of higher learning, and a wise one to employ. This empowers us all to take responsibility for ourselves.

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