A recent study using Medicare patients indicates the rate of deaths and hospitalizations for heart disease and stroke has dropped significantly in the last ten years. The study, taking place between 1999 and 2011, suggests the decline is due to an increase in healthy lifestyle habits, as well as general improvements to medicine.
The study examined data of 34 million Americans covered by Medicare, with special focus on rates of hospitalization, death, and readmittance to hospital in the following years. The rates of decline for heart disease is greater than any other condition included in the study, yet no direct cure is credited with the change.
Through improved quality of care, we have markedly cut down the risk of dying when you are hospitalized with these conditions,” Dr. Harlan Krumholz, lead researcher and professor at the Yale School of Medicine.
While improvements to the efficiency of medical practices has greatly influenced the success rates of care, the many initiatives advocating for healthy diets and exercise has done much to prevent heart disease and stroke from occurring.
Heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States. However, as people continue to pursue healthy lifestyles and medicine continues to advance, it is likely that we will see a further drop in rates of heart disease and stroke. The study indicates that healthy changes help, and do so more effectively than previously imagined. According to Krumholz,
No one thought this kind of progress was possible in this short period of time.”
Read more here- “Big Drop in U.S. Heart-Related Hospitalizations and Deaths, Study Finds,” (Steven Reinberg, HealthDay)