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Research Article Open Access
Purpose: The leading causes of mortality in the US include chronic diseases such as heart disease, stroke, and cancer. These diseases may also be classified as major “lifestyle” diseases that trace partially to imprudent living and risky behavior.
Design: To examine the monetary costs of lifestyle choices.
Setting: USA Subjects: USA citizens
Measures: We utilized the most recent data from the National Center for Health Statistics and mortality costs from the USA Census Bureau in order to estimate the costs of lifestyle decisions leading to premature death.
Analysis: This study examines the monetary costs associated with six personal lifestyle decisions- smoking, diet, excessive alcohol consumption, illicit drug use, accidents, sexually transmitted infections-and consequent premature mortalities.
Results: Our study showed that 40.0% of the 2.47 million deaths annually in the USA may be attributed to lifestyle decisions. The majority of premature deaths that occurred were associated with three lifestyle decisions-smoking, obesity or excessive alcohol consumption. Smoking, obesity, sexually transmitted infections and accidents decreased vis-à-vis the previous decade; whereas, illicit drugs and alcohol-related premature deaths increased from the previous decade.
Conclusion: The value of lifetime earnings lost among individuals as a consequence of lifestyle choices is $241 billion annually. The prospect for future declines in these premature deaths will most likely depend on a decrease in risk factors, continued lifestyle modification and population-based intervention strategies.
Rural Development,Public Administration