Prevention is the key to healthy living and to reducing the risk of many chronic diseases including heart disease, cancer, diabetes and kidney disease. In Northwestern Ontario, health data shows that our chronic disease rates are higher than the rest of the province. Data also shows that we need to improve our health behaviours and environments to prevent these illnesses. For example, in comparison to the rest of Ontario, we have more people who are overweight or obese (62% versus 52.6%), smoke (23.4% versus 17.4%), and drink heavily (23.7% versus 16.2%).

There are two types of risk factors that can influence the development of chronic disease - modifiable and non-modifiable. Modifiable risk factors are those that we can control or change (e.g. exercise, healthy eating, smoking, and alcohol consumption) and non-modifiable risk factors are those that we have no control over (e.g. family history, sex, race, and age). We need to focus on the risk factors that we can change.

Part of Prevention and Screening Services' mandate is to help promote health and healthy living to both the public and our Hospital’s staff. Through education, personal skill development, and health promotion, the Hospital aims to prevent chronic disease and also to help manage it after diagnosis. Prevention and Screening Services is also working to create a healthy and supportive food environment at our Hospital to prevent chronic disease.

Prevention: Your Best Medicine

Learn more about how you can prevent chronic disease and lead a healthy lifestyle by clicking here or follow the links below:

Learn more about some of our Hospitals chronic disease prevention and health promotion initiatives

Chronic Disease Prevention Initiatives

  • TBRHSC Fresh Market
  • Healthy Get-Together
  • TBRHSC Staff Health and Wellness Calendar
  • Staff Meditation and Relaxation Classes
  • Staff Exercise Classes

Chronic Disease Management Programs

Chronic Disease Prevention Messages:

  • The best way to fight chronic disease and illness is to prevent it.
  • Adults, ages 18 to 64, should accumulate 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week.
  • Men, ages 18 to 64, should eat 8 to 10 servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
  • Women, ages 18 to 64, should eat 7 to 8 servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
  • Not smoking is the single best thing you can do to prevent illness.
  • Limit your alcohol intake.
  • Adults should get 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night.
  • Cancer screening finds cancer earlier, when it is easier to treat.
  • Keep stress to a minimum. Try practicing mindfulness exercises.