CRF Blog

The 10 most challenging public-health threats of 2014

by Bill Hayes

The CDC lists The 10 most challenging public-health threats of 2014.

9. Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the United States, killing more than 480,000 Americans each year. In 2014, CDC continued its national tobacco education campaign — Tips from Former Smokers — with hard-hitting new ads featuring secondary health conditions people may not realize are related to smoking. “These new ads are powerful. They highlight illnesses and suffering caused by smoking that people don’t commonly associate with cigarette use,” Dr. Frieden said. “Smokers have told us these ads help them quit by showing what it’s like to live every day with disability and disfigurement from smoking.”

10. A silent epidemic of fatal overdose kills 44 people every day in the US. In 2014 CDC joined with partners to improve prescription monitoring, reducing unnecessary prescriptions. “Prescription drug overdose is epidemic in the United States,” Dr. Frieden said. “All too often, and in far too many communities, the treatment is becoming the problem. States where prescribing rates are highest need to take a particularly hard look at ways to reduce the inappropriate prescription of these drugs that are dangerous when misused or abused.” [more]