Tobacco- February 6, 2015


The Society of Toxicology (SOT) the main professional organization for practicing toxicologists. Occasionally, SOT develops position statements on particular issues. Recently, SOT developed a position statement on the hazards of hookah use. They have shareable info graphics as well as the statement itself online

Reports and Articles

UK Government backs standardised packaging of tobacco

MNT: January 23, 2015
After carefully considering the evidence for standardised packaging, and other relevant information, Public Health Minister Jane Ellison confirmed on 21 January that the Government backs the public health case for introducing the policy. Ministers in the Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will need to confirm whether they consent to the regulations applying to those parts of the UK.
Public Health Minister Jane Ellison said:
Smoking remains one of our most significant public health challenges. It is a major cause of cancer, heart and respiratory disease and almost 80,000 people in England alone die every year from ill health caused by smoking. It places an enormous strain on the NHS.

Typical American Smokers Burn Up at Least $1 Million During Their Lifetimes
Time January 22, 2015
American smokers spend at least $1 million dollars on cigarette-related expenditures over their lifetimes, according to a state-by-state analysis done by the financial consultancy company WalletHub.
The most expensive state for smokers is Alaska, where the habit costs over $2 million dollars on average. For a bargain, move to South Carolina, but that still comes in at nearly $1.1 million.

Efforts to Curtail Tobacco Use Stalled in 2014, Report Says
Health Day  January 21, 2015
Little to no progress is being made in curtailing tobacco use in the United States, a new report from the American Lung Association contends.
The Surgeon General’s 1964 report raised the red flag about the dangers of smoking. Tobacco, however, still claims nearly 500,000 lives each year and costs up to $333 billion in health care expenses and lost productivity in the United States, says the lung association’s annual report for 2014.
“Despite cutting U.S. smoking rates by half in the last 51 years, tobacco’s ongoing burden on America’s health and economy is catastrophic,” said Harold Wimmer, president and CEO of the American Lung Association.

The CDC released a Vital Signs report
The report is on the disparities in nonsmokers’ exposure to secondhand smoke in the U.S.  The report finds that while nonsmokers’ exposure has been reduced by half between 1999-2012, approximately 1 in 4 nonsmokers remain exposed.

This Vital Signs report highlights the very striking disparities among those Americans who are still breathing secondhand smoke, especially young children, African Americans, people living in poverty, and people living in rental housing.

This report is a great opportunity for tobacco control partners to educate and reenergize our coalitions, community members, local elected officials, and our various public health, healthy housing, ethnic health, faith, and other networks and partnerships that have a stake in supporting smokefree workplaces and housing.

The full CDC Vital Signs is available at Colorful infographics, a fact sheet, a podcast, and other materials are available to help spread the word about this report and to support the work of everyone who is engaged in increasing smokefree air protections.


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