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Experts in Government, Public Health, Public Policy and Science Outline Blueprint for Reducing Death and Disease From Tobacco in the United States
Date:2/24/2009

WASHINGTON, Feb. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- To further the goal of eliminating smoking as the number one cause of preventable disease and death in the U.S., twenty six of the nation's leading tobacco control researchers and policy experts today called for regulatory control of all tobacco products. They also called for policies that encourage current tobacco users to reduce their health risks by switching from the most to the least harmful nicotine-containing products.

This group of experts, who have devoted their careers to reducing tobacco use, met in a two-year process they called The Strategic Dialogue on Tobacco Harm Reduction (the Dialogue). Their vision: a world in which virtually no one uses cigarettes. Dialogue participants concluded that realizing that vision would have a profound impact on reducing death and disease from tobacco use.

The Dialogue process was led by Dorothy Hatsukami, Ph.D., director of the University of Minnesota's Tobacco Use Research Center and Masonic Cancer Center's Cancer Control and Prevention Programs, and Mitchell Zeller, a former associate commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and currently a health policy expert with Pinney Associates.

The Dialogue members' recommendations appear in the online version (posted February 25) of the peer-reviewed journal Tobacco Control. Their report recommends various ways to regulate tobacco products based on public health needs. It also recommends helping tobacco users who are unable or unwilling to quit to shift to the least harmful nicotine products. Prominent among the group's recommendations are:

  • Regulation of all aspects of promotion, advertising, and labeling of tobacco products
  • Prohibition of claims touting reductions in exposure to harmful components in tobacco o
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SOURCE American Legacy Foundation
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