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From the Publisher

From the Publisher

2015! It seems so futuristic. I donít know what it is about that figure, but 2015 makes me think about spaceships landing on my roof, with little E.T. like terrestrial beings walking out of them. High technology advances with lightening speed every year, but 2015 makes me think that cars will soon be flying, and we will all have chips implanted in our bodies that will replace driversí licenses.Speaking of the surreal, did I ever think the NFH would be heading into its 12th year in 2015? No, I never thought about it at all, but here we are ó years later ó with our 11th annual January health and wellness issue. Other than our inaugural year, weíve highlighted health care every year for the past 11.And through the years, the one constant is the high cost of health care. Yes, we now have the Affordable Care Act, but ìaffordableî is still questionable amidst health care costs that continue to soar.Also, we are still seeing the same health-related issues. Obesity in this country is pervasive; child obesity continues to rise; obesity-related diseases like diabetes 2, coronary heart disease, some cancers, liver and gallbladder disease continue to increase. The American Heart Association estimates that more than 35 percent of U.S. adults are obese. In 2011, the adult obesity rate exceeded 30 percent in 12 states; 27 more states showed adult obesity rates at more than 25 percent. The AHA estimates that on its current trajectory, adult obesity rates will reach or increase 44 percent in every state by the year 2030. This month, Jason Gray tackles the obesity issue as it relates to todayís environment in his article, ìObesity issues: cutting through the fat.îSkin cancer is another malady affecting health care in this country. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, there are more new cases of skin cancer in the U.S. than the combined incidence of breast, prostate, lung and colon cancers. One person dies of melanoma every hour in the U.S. About 86 percent of melanomas can be attributed to exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Lindsey Harrison focuses on melanoma in her article, ìMelanoma and the Colorado sun.îAlso, as we continue our series on education, Lindsey wrote about school nurses to complement our health and wellness theme.Speaking of wellness, congratulations to one of our writers, Lara Freeman, who gave birth to a healthy baby girl (Heidi) Dec. 23. Heidi has two older brothers at home to help mom, and Lara says sheíll be back with the NFH team in no time!So, there you have it, and here we are ó 2015. Iím sure there are all kinds of local stories that will draw our attention this next year. For sure, we will let you know if we see airborne cars or terrestrials on rooftops!A final note: I hope we can see a bit more peace worldwide in 2015. See you in February!– Michelle

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