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Health

Tobacco use target of government surveys
Cigarette smoking causes an estimated 443,000 deaths each year
 
Published Tuesday, July 29, 2014 11:00 am
by Valencia Mohammed, Afro-American Newspaper

The U.S. Census Bureau is currently collecting data about tobacco use as a voluntary supplement to its monthly July 2014 Current Population Survey.

Scientifically selected households will be questioned about smoking habits regarding cigarettes, tobacco products other than cigarettes and electronic smoking devices.

The tobacco supplement, typically conducted every three to four years, provides data for people 15 years and older on current and former tobacco products use patterns, restrictions on smoking at home and in the workplace, smoking cessation advice obtained from a clinician, personal attitudes toward smoking and emerging tobacco control topics.

“You don’t have to be a demographer to know what is going on, but I welcome the fact that the survey is being done and encourage [participation],” said Philip Pannell, executive director of the Anacostia Coordinating Council in southeast Washington. “The black community is saturated with cigarette advertisements to promote smoking unlike the non-black areas... For years, I have talked about why more activists have not stepped up to fight this menace.”

According to the National Cancer Institute, tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable illness and death in the U.S. It causes varied cancers as well as chronic lung diseases such as emphysema and bronchitis, and heart disease.

Cigarette smoking causes an estimated 443,000 deaths each year, including approximately 49,000 deaths due to exposure to secondhand smoke.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among both men and women in the United States, and 90 percent of lung cancer deaths among men and approximately 80 percent of lung cancer deaths among women are due to smoking.

In addition to lung cancer, smoking causes cancers of the throat, mouth, nasal cavity, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, kidney, bladder, and cervix, and acute myeloid leukemia.

People who smoke are up to six times more likely to suffer a heart attack than nonsmokers, and the risk increases with the number of cigarettes smoked. Smoking also causes most cases of chronic lung disease.

In 2011, an estimated 19 percent of U.S. adults and nearly 16 percent of high school students smoke cigarettes according to the Center for Disease Control.

On July 7, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched hard-hitting ads for its 2014 “Tips From Former Smokers” campaign. The Tips national tobacco education campaign began in 2012 and returns this year with new ad participants living with the devastating effects of smoking-related diseases.

“These new ads are powerful,” wrote CDC Director Tom Frieden in a statement. “They highlight illnesses and suffering caused by smoking that people don’t commonly associate with cigarette use. Smokers have told us these ads help them quit by showing what it’s like to live every day with disability and disfigurement from smoking.”

Healthy People 2020, a framework for action to reduce tobacco use to the point that it is no longer a public health problem for the nation, identified a number of effective strategies that will contribute to ending the tobacco use epidemic.

Based on more than 45 years of evidence, it is clear that the toll tobacco use takes on families and communities can be significantly reduced by fully funding tobacco control programs, increasing the price of tobacco products, enacting comprehensive smoke-free policies, controlling access to tobacco products, reducing tobacco advertising and promotion, implementing anti-tobacco media campaigns, and encouraging and assisting tobacco users to quit.

The Healthy People 2020 Tobacco Use objectives are organized into three key areas:

- Tobacco Use Prevalence: Implementing policies to reduce tobacco use and initiation among youth and adults.

- Health System Changes: Adopting policies and strategies to increase access, affordability, and use of smoking cessation services and treatments.

- Social and Environmental Changes: Establishing policies to reduce exposure to secondhand smoke, increase the cost of tobacco, restrict tobacco advertising, and reduce illegal sales to minors.

Comments

Factual investigative reporting is out the window, replaced with parroting of opinion pieces verbatim as fact. Sad, very very sad....
Posted on July 30, 2014
 

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