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Director of CDC’s Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Gives 25th Anniversary Address

Since its creation in October 1988, our Center has grown and matured in remarkable ways.

  • We built pioneering surveillance tools like YRBS, the Paul Coverdell National Acute Stroke Registry, the National Program of Cancer Registries, and the National Oral Health Surveillance System to monitor priority health conditions, risk factors, and populations.
  • We expanded and translated the evidence base through Prevention Research Center studies, food procurement guidelines, medical eligibility criteria for contraceptive use, and Surgeon General’s reports on smoking, physical activity, oral health, and breastfeeding.
  • We mounted national programs in cancer early detection, tobacco control, diabetes prevention and control, worksite health promotion, and heart disease and stroke prevention to move our science to action.
  • We launched health communication initiatives like VERB, Screen for Life, Fruits & Veggies—More Matters, and Tips from Former Smokers to motivate and support behavior and policy change.
  • And we spearheaded REACH, Steps to a Healthier U.S., Communities Putting Prevention to Work, and Community Transformation Grants to apply coordinated, cross-program approaches to chronic disease prevention and health promotion at the community level.


    These efforts have contributed to important, population-wide health gains:

    • Declines in deaths rates from cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, and cervical cancer.
    • Declines in youth and adult smoking rates and the percentage of nonsmokers exposed to secondhand smoke.
    • Decreases in incidence rates of end-stage renal disease and hospitalization rates for foot amputations among people with diabetes.
    • Record-low pregnancy rates among U.S. women ages 15–19
    • Increases in leisure-time physical activity among older Americans.
    • Increases in leisure-time physical activity among older Americans.
    • Declines in obesity rates among low-income preschoolers.

25 Years Healthy Living For All National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion

Our work is far from done, as chronic diseases still account for the overwhelming share of death, disability, and health care costs in America. But our progress over the past 25 years gives us confidence that we can make even greater gains over the next quarter century.

Ursula E. Bauer, PhD, MPH

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  • Page last reviewed: December 20, 2013
  • Page last updated: December 20, 2013 The U.S. Government's Official Web PortalDepartment of Health and Human Services
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