What Is Preventive Healthcare

Preventive healthcare deals with the prevention of illness to decrease the burden of disease and associated risk factors.

Preventive measures can be applied at all stages across the lifespan and along a disease spectrum, to prevent further decline over time.

Staying healthy and living a long life starts with preventive healthcare. Preventive healthcare can help you avoid illness and detect problems before you notice any symptoms – helping you stay healthy.

The Preventive Care Guidelines include national recommendations from the U.S. Preventive Services Taskforce (USPSTF).

USPSTF recommendations with an A rating (high certainty the benefit to you is substantial) or a B rating (high certainty the benefit to you is moderate) are preventive services covered by the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Under the ACA, new health plans beginning September 23, 2010, are required to cover these preventive services with a USPSTF A or B recommendation at 100 percent (when you use an in-network provider), without a copayment, coinsurance or meeting a deductible.

If you use an out-of-network provider, your usual deductible and expenses may apply.

Leading causes of preventable death

(From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

United States

The leading cause of death in the United States was tobacco. However, poor diet and lack of exercise may soon surpass tobacco as a leading cause of death. These behaviors are modifiable and public health and prevention efforts could make a difference to reduce these deaths.

Leading causes of preventable deaths in the United States .
Cause Deaths caused % of all deaths
Tobacco smoking 435,000 18.1
Poor diet and physical inactivity 400,000 16.6
Alcohol consumption 85,000 3.5
Infectious diseases 75,000 3.1
Toxicants 55,000 2.3
Traffic collisions 43,000 1.8
Firearm incidents 29,000 1.2
Sexually transmitted infections 20,000 0.8
Drug abuse 17,000 0.7


The leading causes of preventable death worldwide share similar trends to the United States. There are a few differences between the two, such as malnutrition, pollution, and unsafe sanitation, that reflect health disparities between the developing and developed world.

Leading causes of preventable deaths worldwide.
Cause Deaths caused (millions per year)
Hypertension 7.8
Smoking 5.0
High cholesterol 3.9
Malnutrition 3.8
Sexually transmitted infections 3.0
Poor diet 2.8
Overweight and obesity 2.5
Physical inactivity 2.0
Alcohol 1.9
Indoor air pollution from solid fuels 1.8
Unsafe water and poor sanitation 1.6


Preventive Care


You and your family may be eligible for some important preventive services at no additional cost to you.

If your plan is subject to the new requirements, you may not have to pay a copayment, co-insurance, or deductible to receive recommended preventive health services, such as screenings, vaccinations, and counseling.

For example, depending on your age, you may have access — at no cost — to preventive services such as:

Some Important Details

This preventive services provision applies only to people enrolled in job-related health plans or individual health insurance policies created after March 23, 2010. If you are in such a health plan, this provision will affect you as soon as your plan begins its first new “plan year” or “policy year” on or after September 23, 2010.

Top things to know about preventive care and services:

  • Grandfathered plans: If your plan is “grandfathered,” these benefits may not be available to you.
  • Network providers: If your health plan uses a network of providers, be aware that health plans are required to provide these preventive services only through an in-network provider. Your health plan may allow you to receive these services from an out-of-network provider, but may charge you a fee.
  • Office visit fees: Your doctor may provide a preventive service, such as a cholesterol screening test, as part of an office visit. Be aware that your plan can require you to pay some costs of the office visit, if the preventive service is not the primary purpose of the visit, or if your doctor bills you for the preventive services separately from the office visit.
  • Questions: If you have questions about whether these new provisions apply to your plan, contact your insurer or plan administrator.  If you still have questions, contact your state insurance departmentexit disclaimer icon.
  • Talk to your health care provider: To know which covered preventive services are right for you — based on your age, gender, and health status — ask your health care provider.

For More Information


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4 thoughts on “What Is Preventive Healthcare

  • July 24, 2020 at 12:36 pm

    This area of health and wellness has always been of interest to me. It seems as if offering such a program with benefits would be an encouragement to individuals to take better care of themselves through physical activity and proper nutrition. I wonder what the statistics show concerning changes in different habits which decrease ones health since the program first started ?  

    Are there specific tests that are given concerning ones’ level of health and where they my be as far as receiving benefits ? Things like a general fitness test, body composition test or vo2 max test for cardiorespritory fitness ? 

    I noticed obesity and overweight being high on the list concerning the international list. Where is it in the U.S ? I know inproper nutrition and inactivity were near the top, so I would think that obesity would be right there with it. 

    If an individual is unemployed and/or has no health insurance this doesn’t apply to them correct ? What about having a chronic health condition, does this have any impact on benefits ? 

    Overall, it’s a good program to have, and hopefully it will help in decreasing the number of deaths seen due to these unhealthy habits that many individuals have. 

    • July 24, 2020 at 12:54 pm

      Thank you Justin

  • July 24, 2020 at 8:00 pm

    Hello there, preventive healthcare deals with the prevention of illness to decrease the burden of disease associated with risk factor

    Preventive measures can be applied at any stage of the person life span and along a disease spectrum, to prevent further decline over time. Thanks a lot for sharing this awesome article I know it would really be of help to others as it has helped me.

    • July 25, 2020 at 6:30 am

      Thank you that sums it up very nicely.


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