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Smoke-Free Laws Moving Ahead in U.S.
Date:4/21/2011

ndhand smoke," CDC director Dr. Thomas R. Frieden said in an agency news release. "While there has been a lot of progress over the past decade, far too many Americans continue to be exposed to secondhand smoke at their workplaces, increasing their risk of cancer and heart attacks."

"Secondhand smoke is responsible for 46,000 heart disease deaths and 3,400 lung cancer deaths among nonsmokers each year," Ursula Bauer, director of CDC's National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, added in the news release. "Completely prohibiting smoking in all public places and workplaces is the only way to fully protect nonsmokers from secondhand smoke exposure."

The 2010 Surgeon General's report reiterated that any exposure to tobacco smoke -- including secondhand smoke -- can cause damage to the body's organs and DNA, the CDC news release said.

More information

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has more about the health effects of secondhand smoke.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, news release, April 21, 2011; CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, April 22, 2011


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