Chronic Diseases and Conditions

Chronic diseases - such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes - are the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. These diseases account for seven of every 10 deaths and affect the quality of life of 90 million Americans.

Chronic diseases affect the lives of six million New Yorkers, and account for 73% of deaths in New York State annually. Of the 157,000 deaths in New York State in 2002, 114,000 were attributable to the top five chronic diseases. The proportion of deaths due to chronic disease in New York is somewhat higher than that of the United States, primarily because of higher deaths from diseases of the heart.

Although common and costly, many chronic diseases are also preventable. Many chronic diseases are linked to lifestyle choices that are within your own hands to change. Eating nutritious foods, becoming more physically active and avoiding tobacco can help keep you from developing many of these diseases and conditions. And, even if you already have diabetes, heart disease, arthritis or another chronic condition, eating more healthful food and getting more exercise, whether it's a brisk walk, a bike ride, a jog or a swim, can help you better manage your illness, avoid complications and prolong your life.

The Department of Health's Division of Chronic Disease Prevention implements innovative public health strategies across New York State to reduce the incidence and burden of chronic diseases and related conditions. Please see the Division of Chronic Disease Prevention Fact Sheet for more information about our work.

Chronic Diseases and Conditions

Data Sources and Teaching Tools

Strategic Plans and Reports