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Preventing Chronic Disease by Fostering Health

Only 20% of the factors that determine health are a result of clinical status and/or medical care.1 The remaining 80% of the modifiable determinants of health are related to social and economic factors (40%), health behaviors (30%), and environmental factors (10%).1

In addition, in the United States and throughout most of the world, seven out of ten deaths are due to chronic disease. Nearly one out of every two Americans has at least one chronic disease, which includes those illnesses related to cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity.2

On the positive side, research shows that nearly 75% of chronic diseases are preventable, much of which can be accomplished via healthy lifestyle behaviors across the lifespan.2 Promoting those health behaviors to prevent illness is where the Center for Health Promotion and Well-Being comes in.

Why the Center was Established

Creighton University has excellent, long-established programs in the health sciences that prepare competent and compassionate clinicians in medicine, nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, physical therapy, occupational therapy and emergency medicine. Drawing on this interdisciplinary expertise, the Center for Health Promotion and Well-Being focuses on "the 80%" of the modifiable determinants of health. We do this through an integrated approach that includes academic programs, research and service programming. 

1. University of Wisconsin, Population Health Institute, Feb 2010.

2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.