The diseases causing the most deaths in the U.S. are heart disease and cancer followed by chronic respiratory ailments and then strokes. Accidents are the 5th biggest killer.
The World Health Organization (WHO) issued its first Global Status Report today that says these same diseases are also the biggest killers in the world except for diabetes, which kills more people worldwide than accidents.
30% of people killed by these diseases are under the age of 60 and so the 36 million deaths annually greatly impact countries’ economies … especially low and middle income countries.
WHO says these deaths are premature and preventable and people need to change their lifestyles. WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan said “The rise of chronic non-communicable diseases (NCDs) presents an enormous challenge”.
History shows it is a big battle to get people to change, worse than getting them to become immunized against things such as smallpox.
In this case they want people to reduce tobacco use, improve their physical activities, cut down on alcohol consumption, and to eat healthier. Might as well ask them to stop having sex to.
WHO’s answer to improving things is the usual U.N. one. More government intervention programs and to spend more money on health care. What’s a few more hundred billion on top of the 3 trillion or so spent annually that the U.S. can’t pay back now without blowing up the dollar?
If people are unable or unwilling to make these changes for their own good … then it is very unlikely more taxpayer dollars will produce a better outcome. Governments have shown by example in spite of their constant promises that they can’t deliver things to people that people have been unable to deliver to themselves.