As Americans continue to grow ever sicker from chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, cancer, and stroke, the need for comprehensive interventions has also grown (Kung, Hoyert, Xu, & Murphy, 2008). An estimated 70% of deaths each year are attributable to chronic illness, with heart disease, cancer, and stroke accounting for 50% of those deaths (Kung et al., 2008). Americans spend a large majority of their time in the workplace and, as can be seen in other chapters of this Handbook, that fact has made occupational settings an ideal place for prevention and health intervention programs for many years (Haskell & Blair, 1980). However, the effectiveness of these programs has to be measured and evaluated if they are to survive. The importance of program evaluation, therefore, cannot be underestimated. The purview of program evaluation exists within the social sciences, but also within the private business sector and governmental programs. In fact, The Health Communication Unit at the University of Toronto (2007) goes as far as to define a program as follows: ".any group of related complementary activities intended to achieve specific outcomes or results. For example, community gardens, shopping skill classes and health cooking demonstrations." (p. 5). Furthermore, they define a program evaluation as, ".the systematic gathering, analysis and reporting of data about a program to assist decision making" (p. 6).
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