Health is more than the absence of threats or disease and disability;
it is a precious resource that helps to create productive satisfying lives
for ourselves and our families and economic security for our nation. A very
high value is placed on health, but all too often health is not protected.
Indeed, the current investments in health protection are far overshadowed
by expenditures to restore health once it is lost. Although the United States
currently spends $1.9 trillion a year, or 15.5% of the gross domestic product,
on health care, less than 1% of the $1.9 trillion is spent on protecting health
and preventing the illnesses and injuries that require health care services
in the first place.1,2 A similar
disequilibrium characterizes the US health research portfolio.3
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