Tester promotes National Public Health Week

Senator joins effort to fight diseases that claim millions of American lives

(U.S. SENATE) – With chronic illnesses like heart disease taking millions of American lives, Senator Jon Tester is raising awareness of the benefits of better public health by supporting “National Public Health Week.”

“National Public Health Week” is the week of April 2-8.  It focuses attention on public health initiatives and actions that prevent chronic diseases.

“It’s important to let folks know about all the tools available to help foster and encourage healthy, productive lives,” Tester said.  “Investing in public health not only saves lives and cuts health care costs, but also leads to better quality of life down the road.”

Studies show that avoiding tobacco and eating a healthy diet reduce the risk for chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. 

The first “National Public Health Week” was in 1995.  Officials this year are emphasizing how disease prevention helps reduce health care costs.  It is estimated that every $1 spent on prevention leads to nearly $6 in health care savings.

In addition to premature deaths and hardship to families, chronic illnesses cost 2.5 billion missed days of work nationwide every year.

Tester sponsored a Senate resolution that supports “National Public Health Week.”  The resolution recognizes the efforts of public health professionals in preventing disease and injury.  Tester noted that public health professionals helped many communities in central and eastern Montana respond to last summer’s flooding and helped contain an outbreak of whooping cough in Bozeman in November.