The United States may be losing ground when it comes to the years of life residents can expect to live free from chronic disease.
Officials at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have assessed U.S. residents’ health in the Healthy People 2010 final review, a report on progress at meeting the health improvement goals set forth in November 2000 in a Healthy People 2010 document.
The main goals of the Healthy People program were to increase quality and years of healthy life and to eliminate health disparities.
The country is following up with the Healthy People 2010 project with a Healthy People 2020 project.
Since the Healthy People 2010 project began, life expectancy has increased both at birth and at age 65, HHS officials found.
Life expectancy at birth for the total population increased to 77.8 years in 2006-2007, from 76.8 years in 2000-2001, and death rates also declined for causes included in Healthy People 2010 program objectives.
Mortality from conditions such as female breast cancer, colorectal cancer, coronary heart disease and stroke fall, officials say.
Expected years of life in good or better health increased to 69 years, from 68.5 years.
Expected years free from activity limitations increased to 66.2 years, from 61.5 years.