IOM proposes blueprint for tracking chronic disease

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"Without a national surveillance system," the IOM concludes, "the gaps in current monitoring approaches will continue to exist, making it more difficult to track the nation's health status despite advances in technology and data collection."

The American Heart Association applauded the blueprint.

"With a coordinated system," AHA President Gordon Tomaselli said in a statement, "we can determine which strategies have the greatest impact in reducing the financial and health burden of cardiovascular disease. These recommendations will enable us to thread the labyrinth of data on heart disease and stroke and close critical gaps in the treatment and prevention of America’s leading health threats."