Tobacco – April 19, 2013


HealthierChoicesPublic Comment Opportunity: Tobacco Retailer Training Programs
Comments due: April 26, 2013
FDA is seeking comments on its recently released draft guidance related to tobacco retailer training programs. The draft guidance contains information about the various elements that should be covered in a training program. This is an opportunity for states to provide any experience and expertise they may have with regard to developing and implementing tobacco retailer training programs. Click here to read the notice in the Federal Register and to submit a comment, or go to and search for Docket No. FDA–2010–D–0350. Click here for the draft guidance document.

Click HERE for Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights Foundation’s most recent quarterly update to the lists and maps of U.S. municipalities and states with smokefree laws now in effect.

Prevention Success Stories from Around the Country 
Trust for America’s Health Public health success stories from state and local Community Transformation Grantees are highlighted. The stories can be browsed by public health topic, state, or city/county.
To commemorate the third anniversary of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) released a story bank featuring stories of successful prevention initiatives in action from around the country.

Has the tobacco industry evaded the FDA’s ban on ‘Light’ cigarette descriptors?
Tobacco ControlKey findings: Following the FDA’s ban on the use of “Lights” descriptors or similar terms to communicate about “reduced-risk” tobacco products, cigarette manufacturers substituted color descriptors within brand names. After the ban, 92% of smokers reported they could easily identify their usual brands, and 68% correctly named the package color associated with their usual brand, while sales for “Lights” cigarettes remained unchanged.

NALBOH Offers Tobacco Prevention Tool Kit
NALBOH is excited to offer its fourth edition of the Tobacco Use Prevention and Control Tool Kit for free PDF download

Reports and Articles


The three best ideas in Obama’s budget
The Washington Post Wonkblog, 4/11/13
And so the Obama administration is proposing to fund it by raising the federal cigarette tax from $1.01 to $1.95 per pack. That would net $78 billion for pre-K, but the beauty of the approach is that the tobacco tax also accomplishes an important goal. Namely: “Researchers have found that raising taxes on cigarettes significantly reduces consumption, with especially large effects on youth smoking.”

Walking Cure: Strolls Can Help Teen Smokers to Quit
April 10, 2013   Is the buzz from exercise enough to compensate for nicotine hits from cigarettes? Read more.

Smoking in Youth-Rated Movies Doubles: Report
HealthDay, 04/09/2013
Smoking scenes in youth-rated movies doubled in number between 2010 and 2012, and have returned to the same level as a decade ago, according to a new report.

Smoke-free subsidized housing would save $521 million a year
CDC: April 16, 2013
The estimated annual cost savings from eliminating smoking in all U.S. subsidized housing would be $521 million, according to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  This is the first study to estimate the costs that could be saved by prohibiting smoking in subsidized housing, including public housing and other rental assistance programs. The bulk of those annual savings – $341 million – would come from reduced health care expenditures related to secondhand smoke.  The study also estimates savings of $108 million in annual renovation expenses and $72 million in annual smoking-related fire loses

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
-released a new report showing that adults experiencing mental illness or a substance use disorder account for nearly 40 percent of all cigarettes smoked.

Bellingham Board of Health (MA) votes to prohibit cigarette smoking (including electronic cigarettes) at town-owned playgrounds, swimming areas, and athletic fields.

Falmouth Board of Health (MA) considers banning the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies.

Kinnelon Board of Health (NJ) recommends that the Borough Council extend smoking ban to all municipal property.

Marshall County Board of Health’s (WV) approved smoking ban in outdoor areas began April 1, 2013.

Walpole Board of Health (MA) raises tobacco sale age to 19.

Public Health Leaders Urge FDA to Act on Menthol Cigarettes
Last week, the Tobacco Control Legal Consortium hand-delivered a formal Citizen Petition to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on behalf of 19 national organizations, urging the FDA to prohibit the use of menthol as a characterizing flavor in cigarettes. According to the petition, menthol cigarettes are the source of addiction for nearly half of all teen smokers; menthol increases the palatability of smoking, especially among youth and members of racial and ethnic populations; and menthol also increases the difficulty of quitting. In 2009, when Congress passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act which, among other things, prohibited fruity and candy-like additives as “characterizing flavors” in cigarettes, it made one exception, deferring action on the most popular of all flavors — menthol — and directing the FDA to decide whether continued sale of menthol cigarettes is “appropriate for public health.” The recently filed petition will require the FDA to begin a formal consideration process that could include gathering of public testimony.

DOD launches healthy base initiative
The Department of Defense (DOD) reported the selection of 13 sites for its Healthy Base Initiative, “a demonstration project for Operation Live Well, aimed at increasing the health and wellness of the total force, including wellness and family members.” Sites’ efforts will focus on making informed nutritional food choices, increased physical activity, weight management, and tobacco cessation.

Raise cigarette prices to snuff teen smoking: Our view
USA Today – Key message: the most effective tool for curbing teen smoking is also one of the simplest: Raise cigarette taxes. (opposing view, from the National Association of Convenience Stores: Cigarette tax hikes don’t help)

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
Recently released a report on cigars entitled, Not Your Grandfather’s Cigar: A New Generation of Cheap & Sweet Cigars Threatens a New Generation of Kids.

New policy brief entitled Addressing Tobacco Use Through Healthcare Systems and sub-titled, “A Real-World Case Example of How to Reduce Smoking Rates, Improve Patient Health and Lower Costs”. The brief is a joint effort of Partnership for Prevention and the Multi-State Collaborative for Health System Change. The brief is HERE.

Would a pack-a-day smoker save $1650 a year if they quit smoking?
The Oregonian PolitiFact, April 4, 2013
Lawmakers in Salem are taking a look at the state’s cigarette tax and floating the possibility of allowing counties to add their own tax on top of the the current $1.18 per pack. Advocates spend a lot of time talking about how a higher per-pack price would cut the number of youth smokers — and the various health benefits that would come with never starting.

Do Companies that Refuse to Hire Smokers Help or Harm Them?
Los Angeles Times (Blog), Karen Kaplan, 03/28/2013
The Cleveland Clinic is a world-famous medical center that is consistently ranked among the top hospitals in the country.

U.S. Launches New Batch of Graphic Anti-Smoking Ads
Associated Press, Mike Stobbe, 03/28/2013
Government health officials launched the second round of a graphic ad campaign Thursday that is designed to get smokers off tobacco, saying they believe the last effort convinced tens of thousands to quit.


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