Chronic Disease Prevention Data and Reports: Quick Facts

Wisconsin Quick Facts

Explore Quick Facts for chronic diseases by selecting the tabs:

  • Diabetes
  • Heart Disease
  • Stroke
  • Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity


Diabetes is a group of diseases marked by high blood glucose (sugar) levels caused by the body's inability to make insulin (a hormone), or the body's inability to use the insulin it does make. The most common types of diabetes are type 1 and type 2. Of those diagnosed with diabetes, approximately 90–95% have type 2.

Prediabetes is a serious health condition where blood glucose levels are higher than normal, but not high enough yet to be diagnosed with diabetes. Prediabetes increases one's risk for type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Approximately one in three adults have prediabetes, but only about 15% have been diagnosed.

Prevention and Progress

  • Take the Prediabetes Risk Test to find out if you're at risk.
  • The Chronic Disease Prevention Program strives to increase capacity, awareness, and screening and referral to the National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP). The National DPP is an evidence-based lifestyle change program with existing sites across Wisconsin.
  • To learn more about the National DPP or access more prevention resources, visit our Prediabetes Home page.


An estimated 9% of Wisconsin adults have diagnosed diabetes (Wisconsin Behavioral Risk Factor Survey, 2019). Additionally, 34% have prediabetes, but the majority remain undiagnosed and unaware of their condition (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2020).

Heart Disease

Heart disease includes a number of conditions that affect blood flow and heart functioning. Coronary heart disease (or coronary artery disease) is the most common type of heart disease, affecting nearly 5% of Wisconsin adults. In 2018, heart disease was the number one leading cause of death in Wisconsin, claiming over 23% of deaths (12,053 people). For more detailed information on the mortality burden of heart disease, check out the Annual Wisconsin Death Report, P-01170-18, or to query more death data, visit the Wisconsin Interactive Statistics on Health Mortality Module.

Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a common and dangerous condition where the pressure of your blood in your blood vessels is higher than it should be. In Wisconsin, about 1.3 million adults have hypertension, or one in three adults. Unfortunately, about half of those with hypertension do not have it under control. Of those who are not in control, about 40% don't even know that they have hypertension.

Prevention and Progress

Several factors can increase the risk of heart disease. These include health conditions, such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol, lifestyle, age, and family history. Fortunately, some of these factors can be controlled. Visit our Heart Disease Home page to learn more about heart health efforts.


An estimated 31% of Wisconsin adults have diagnosed hypertension (Wisconsin Behavioral Risk Factor Survey, 2019).


Stroke occurs when something blocks blood supply to part of the brain, or when a blood vessel to the brain bursts. Quick treatment is critical for someone experiencing a stroke: every minute in treatment delay counts. Each year in Wisconsin, stroke-related death and disability affect thousands of individuals, their families, employers, and communities. In 2018, stroke was the fifth leading cause of death.

Prevention and Progress

  • Due to Wisconsin’s efforts to improve stroke triage and treatment, 95% of people hospitalized survived their stroke at hospital discharge in 2017.
  • Studies show that stroke patients who arrive at an emergency department by emergency medical services (EMS) receive more timely, definitive care. In 2013, 40% of Wisconsin stroke patients arrived at the hospital by EMS.
  • To learn more about efforts to improve stroke care, visit the Wisconsin's Coverdell Stroke Program's page



Nutrition, Physical
Activity, Obesity

Eating well and being active can prevent many chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cancer, stroke, heart disease, and obesity. Access to healthy foods and convenient places for physical activity play a large role in preventing chronic diseases.

Additionally, breastfeeding is the best method for early infant feeding and healthiest option for mothers and babies. Breastfeeding shows both short-term and long-term health benefits in obesity and chronic disease prevention.

Prevention and Progress

  • Since 2013, Wisconsin has seen an increase in over 20% of early care education providers adopting strategies to increase physical activity.
  • Since 2014, worksites representing 31,000+ employees across Wisconsin developed and/or adopted policies to implement food service guidelines and nutrition standards.
  • The number of birthing facilities reporting that almost all mother-infant pairs stay together more than 23 hours per day increased from 21 in 2011 to 32 in 2016. For more information on breastfeeding initiatives, visit our Breastfeeding Resources page.
  • Wisconsin's comprehensive state health improvement plan specifically addresses nutrition and physical activity as a priority area. For more information, visit Healthy Wisconsin.


Data are from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity's "Data, Trends, and Maps." 2019 data used for adult metrics, and 2017 for adolescents and breastfeeding metrics.


Last Revised: April 14, 2021