The World Health Organization defines chronic diseases as “diseases of long duration and generally slow progression.” Common themes found in other definitions state that chronic diseases:
Chronic diseases impact the health of the population as well as the sustainability of the health care system. Over half of Newfoundland and Labrador residents aged 12 years and older have at least one chronic disease; many people live with more than one.
Through its policy initiatives the Department of Health and Community Services is focusing on a select number of diseases and conditions that affect a large portion of the population and have a significant impact on quality of life. These include:
In December 2011, the Provincial Government released Improving Health Together: A Policy Framework for Chronic Disease Prevention and Management in Newfoundland and Labrador. This Framework sets the direction for chronic disease prevention and management by all partners including government, community groups, employers, the health system, and individuals. In addition to disease-specific actions, the Framework focuses on health system changes which will provide improved support for people at risk of developing, or living with, all types of chronic diseases.
Current and future actions will stem from these policy statements:
The Department works closely with the following community partners providing support to people living with chronic disease.
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