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With families and doctors facing what seems like a new health crisis everyday, CoxHealth is spreading awareness about the imporance of getting to know your family health history. KSMU's Chasity Mayes has more.
This report was produced November 19, 2009.
Taking steps toward a healthy future often requires people to examine their past. As the holidays continue to approach at a rapid pace, CoxHealth is encouraging people in the Ozarks to get the most out of their time with loved ones by discussing and documenting their family health history. Since 2004, the US Surgeon General has declared Thanksgiving to be National Family History Day. The idea is to inspire people across the nation to gain a better understanding of family medical histories which will aid them in taking the steps to live the healthiest life possible. Mary Owen, CoxHealth Genetic Counselor says that it is important to know your family medical history, because it gives people a head start when it comes to genetic diseases.Experts recommend documenting diseases and causes of death going back at least three generations. Studies conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that 96 percent of Americans believe that knowing their family health history is important. However, only one-third of that group has tried to find out that information
For KSMU News, I'm Chasity Mayes.