CDC updates chronic disease indicators

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated the chronic disease indicators (CDI) and redesigned the CDI online database.

The CDI is a set of surveillance indicators developed by consensus among CDC, the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE), and the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD). These key indicators for chronic diseases, conditions, and risk factors have been expanded from 97 to 124, and now include the topic areas of disability, mental health, older adults, reproductive health, and school health. There are several oral health indicators, including teeth lost among adults, fluoridation, dental visits, and more.

"These indicators are possibly the most useful tools available to prioritize the public health agenda in the nation," said John Robitscher, CEO of the National Association of Chronic Disease (NACDD), in a press release.

According to Wayne H. Giles, MD, director of the Division of Population Health at CDC, "Access to updated, standardized data is critical for implementing effective public health practices, programs, and policies."

In addition to the new indicators, an online database has been redesigned and relaunched. The website,, is the only integrated source for comprehensive access to a range of key indicators derived from vital statistics, disease registries, national health surveys, inpatient and emergency department databases, Medicare claims data, policy tracking systems, and the U.S. Census. The website, allows users to compare data on the prevalence of chronic diseases in 40 large metropolitan areas, as well as at the state and national levels.

The chronic disease indicators were originally established in the late 1990s to provide public health agencies with access to the most relevant, up-to-date, and uniformly defined chronic disease data at the state and county levels. In 2010, chronic disease represented seven of the top 10 causes of death in the U.S.

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