Tobacco- September 6, 2013


The North American Quitline Consortium has published a new Quality Improvement Initiative Issue Paper: Quitline Referral Systems. This paper aims to explore the current landscape of quitline referral systems with healthcare and other providers and to examine in detail the critical operational and outcome-related components of these referral systems.

Reports and Articles

Prevent Cancer Foundation efforts successful in gaining Federal Government support of Lung Cancer Screening
Prevent Cancer Foundation has been heavily involved in advocacy coalition efforts to get the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) to recommend screening people who are at high risk for lung cancer with high-quality annual low-dose CT scans. Implementing this screening according to guidelines can prevent a substantial number of lung cancer-related deaths. Lung cancer screening now joins three other screening procedures, breast, colorectal and cervical, which Prevent Cancer has worked diligently to promote over the years.

E-Cigarette Makers’ Ads Echo Tobacco’s Heyday
The New York Times, 8/29/2013
Electronic cigarettes may be a creation of the early 21st century, but critics of the devices say manufacturers are increasingly borrowing marketing tactics that are more reminiscent of the heady days of tobacco in the mid-1900s.

New recommendation: Interventions can prevent smoking by children and teens
U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Key findings: The USPSTF gives a grade “B” recommendation that primary care clinicians provide interventions, including education or brief counseling, to prevent initiation of tobacco use in school-aged children and adolescents. Click here to read more, or click here for the USPSTF recommendation.

Tobacco cessation interventions for young people
The Cochrane Library.
 A review of the findings from 28 studies that researched ways of helping teenagers to quit.
Key findings: Programs that combine a variety of approaches show promise. Medications such as nicotine replacement and bupropion have not yet been shown to be successful with adolescents. More research is needed before the likely success and costs of large scale service programs can be estimated accurately.

New study details pervasiveness of little cigars and cigarillos in African American neighborhoods
American Journal of Public Health.
Key findings: Little cigars and cigarillos (LCCs) are significantly more likely to be available and are significantly cheaper in predominantly African American neighborhoods. Outdoor advertising is significantly more prominent in AA neighborhoods. Click here for a press release from Legacy, or click here to read the abstract of the study.

Report: Underage tobacco sales at record lows
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration.
The latest report on the Synar Amendment program shows that sales of tobacco to minors in the U.S. were held near an all-time low last year, with a national average of 9.1%. Further reading: Press release from SAMHSA and FY 2012 Synar report, including state-by-state data

Why Is Obama Caving on Tobacco?
New York Times.
Michael Bloomberg critiques the Obama Administration for “bowing to pressure from the tobacco industry… in a move that would be a colossal public health mistake and potentially contribute to the deaths of tens of millions of people around the world.” Related: A recent statement from several public health groups expressed disappointment with USTR’s decision, calling the decision a missed opportunity for the U.S. to lead global tobacco control efforts.

Health disparities emerge on modern civil rights front
USA Today.
The 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech has brought renewed attention to economic inequalities and health disparities. African-Americans on average don’t live as long as whites. They have less access to private health care and healthy foods and are significantly more likely to suffer from an array of diseases and conditions, ranging from cancer and diabetes to high blood pressure and obesity.

Doctors support raising the smoking age
(NY) – CNN.
If a New York City council proposal is approved and signed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the legal age to buy any form of tobacco would increase from 18 to 21.

With Formula One movie “Rush” set to open, public health groups and state Attorneys General highlight film’s tobacco use and brand depiction in promotional materials harmful to young audiences
Legacy press release. Public health groups have joined state Attorneys General offices to call out the depiction of tobacco brand imagery and smoking in promotions for the movie Rush –coming out in September – citing its potential impact to tobacco use among youth.

Oregon’s No. 1 in tobacco sales to kids, and that’s not new
The Oregonian: September 02, 2013
When a new federal report last week showed Oregon leading the nation in retail outlets illegally selling tobacco to kids, the number was no fluke.
Despite its reputation for health care and healthy living, the state has led the country three of the last five years in selling tobacco to kids. It took fourth place one of those years, and missed first place by .1 percent another.
About 80 percent of smokers begin before the age 18, contributing to more than 400,000 premature deaths annually in the U.S. Smoking, linked to cancer and heart disease, is a notoriously hard habit to kick.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that about 6 percent of adults have tried e-cigarettes, nearly doubling since 2010.
Absent of tobacco, e-cigarettes have been promoted as a possible aid in getting people to stop smoking and thereby reducing their lung cancer risk. However, cancer prevention experts caution that more research is needed to understand the potential role of e-cigarettes in smoking cessation. Other opinions state that e-cigarette companies will never promise to help you quit smoking – such as the news article HERE.

More Self-Aware People Quit Smoking Easier
How your brain responds to anti-smoking messages may be useful in helping to kick the habit, a new study in the journal Nature Neuroscience reports. Read the related news article HERE and the abstract HERE.

FDA Discusses Banning Online Sales of E-Cigarettes
August 30, 2013
The Food and Drug Administration has been in discussions with the e-cigarette industry about a possible online-sales ban of the product,  as it prepares a package of proposed regulations for the increasingly popular devices, people familiar with the matter said.

How Hospitals Can Help Patients Quit Smoking Before Surgery
August 30, 2013
As GW rolls out its smoke-free campus policy this fall, it follows suit of colleges nationwide that are mostly ignoring the question of how to enforce their smoking bans.

E-Cigarettes Contain Chemicals That Make Some ‘As Harmful As Normal Tobacco’
August 29, 2013
Electronic cigarettes contain carcinogenic chemicals that make some as harmful as normal tobacco, a new French study has claimed.

Female Smokers at Higher Risk for Hemorrhagic Stroke
August 28, 2013
The advice that “smoking is bad for you” may be old news, but the American Heart Association has released a new study in their journal Stroke, which reveals women are more susceptible to certain stroke-related risks that result from smoking.

Doctors Support Raising the Smoking Age
August 28, 2013
Teenagers looking to buy cigarettes in New York may have to look elsewhere if a city council proposal is approved and signed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Study Cites Progress in Curbing Tobacco Sales to Minors
August 27, 2013
Federal and state efforts to snuff out tobacco sales to minors are working despite a slight rise in those sales between 2011 and 2012, a new report says.

Doctors Asked to Counsel Teens About the Dangers of Smoking
August 26, 2013
Doctors already have a hefty checklist of topics to go over with their patients.

Smoking Rates Are on the Decline, but Not So Big Tobacco
August 26, 2013   For years now, the tobacco industry has battled a declining U.S. smoker base and a barrage of anti-smoking campaigns.

Electronic Cigarette Use Among Middle and High School  Students
United States, 2011–2012
The CDC released this brief article in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.  It cites that e-cigarette use more than doubled among U.S. middle and high school students from 2011-2012. It is noteworthy that 20% of middle school e-cigarette users had never smoked conventional cigarettes. Click here for the Press Release.

CDC Vital Signs:  Preventable Deaths from Heart Disease & Stroke
This publication offers practical information to health care systems, providers, health departments, community organizations and consumers. Efforts to reduce tobacco use are featured prominently in this Vital Signs report.

Providence vs. Big Tobacco
In January of 2012, I was pleased to sign two local ordinances designed to limit the ability of the tobacco industry to harm Providence’s young people. Together, these laws banned the sale of flavored tobacco products in the City of Providence, as well as sales involving the redemption of coupons and multi-pack discounts that are designed to circumvent state pricing restrictions.

Menthol in Cigarettes, Tobacco Products; Request for Comments
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is issuing this advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) to obtain information related to the potential regulation of menthol in cigarettes. FDA is also making available its preliminary scientific evaluation of public health issues related to the use of menthol in cigarettes. The preliminary scientific evaluation indicates there is likely a public health impact of menthol in cigarettes. This ANPRM is seeking comments, including comments on FDA’s preliminary evaluation, and data, research, or other information that may inform regulatory actions FDA might take with respect to menthol in cigarettes.


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