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Arizona Shows More Than a 20% Drop in Smoking Rates
Date:5/27/2009

170,000 Arizonans quit smoking since 2007

PHOENIX, May 27 /PRNewswire/ -- New information from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System 2008, shows that the rate of smoking among adults in Arizona has dropped significantly -- more than four percentage points representing a 20.7 percent decrease in prevalence equating to 170,000 Arizonans who quit smoking since 2007. The rate of smoking in one year dropped from 19.8 percent to 15.7 percent.

Bill Pfeifer, TRUST Commission Chairman said, "This is a historic drop in smoking prevalence for Arizona."

This decrease, the single largest decline in tobacco use in any state in the U.S. during the past year, moves Arizona from ranking 26th in the nation for smoking prevalence to 7th.

"This is a jump in the ranking of Arizona; and that says great things about the leadership of our state for tobacco control," said Wayne Tormala, Bureau Chief for the Arizona Department of Health Services Bureau of Tobacco and Chronic Disease (ADHS BTCD). "But what this also means is that more Arizonans are making the choice to positively impact their own health, the health of our state, their personal budgets, and our Arizona economy."

"Healthcare costs for smoking related illnesses cost Arizona $3.6 million a day," Tormala added.

"Our state is progressive in tobacco control," Pfeifer said. "The TRUST Commission has worked closely with the American Heart Association, the American Lung Association, and the American Cancer Society locally to spearhead tobacco control efforts in our state." The Commission works closely with ADHS BTCD, all 15 counties statewide, community partners statewide and other tobacco control organizations like Arizonans Concerned About Smoking and the Coalition for Tobacco Free Arizona.

"Truly it is because of partnership and collaboration statewide that we have been successful in moving t
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SOURCE TRUST Commission
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