Health Funders Urged to Battle Chronic Disease

Grantmakers in Health (GIH) is urging health funders to fund efforts that encourage Americans to adopt and maintain healthier lifestyles, in order to reduce the risk of chronic disease, the Philanthropy News Network reported March 29.

GIH said funders should focus on initiatives that address unhealthy behaviors, including smoking, poor eating habits, and physical inactivity.

GIH has released an Issue Brief called “Healthy Behaviors: Addressing Chronic Disease At Its Roots” (click here to download the report in PDF format) which describes possible policy changes and presents a framework for designing effective interventions.

“There are a number of risk factors that contribute to chronic disease, but behavior plays the major role. We all know from personal experience how hard it is to change behavior, given that there are powerful forces at play that influence the choices people make and, in some cases, the choices people have,” said Lauren LeRoy, president and CEO at GIH. “Philanthropy has a critical role to play in creating environments where people are motivated to make healthy choices and where they can be successful in their efforts to live healthier lives.”