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States Slash Funding for Tobacco Prevention Programs
Date:12/9/2009

tional rate. Colorado, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Washington are other states that have made large cuts to tobacco prevention programs.
  • In fiscal year 2010, states will collect $25.1 billion in revenue from the tobacco settlement and from tobacco taxes, but will spend just 2.3 percent ($567.5 million) of that on tobacco prevention and cessation programs. Many states are expected to hike tobacco taxes next year.
  • North Dakota is the only state that currently funds a tobacco prevention program at the level recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Only nine states fund tobacco prevention at even half the CDC-recommended level, while 31 states and the District of Columbia provide less than one-quarter of the recommended funding.
  • For every dollar states spend to discourage tobacco use, tobacco companies spend $20 to market their products. In total, tobacco companies spend $12.8 billion a year on marketing, according to the Federal Trade Commission.
  • Decreases in smoking have slowed and even stalled in the United States, according to recent surveys. For example, the adult smoking rate in 2008 was 20.6 percent, compared with 20.9 percent in 2004, the CDC reported in November. While smoking among high school students has declined from a high of 36.4 percent in 1997, 20 percent of high school students still smoke and the rate of decline has slowed in recent years.

    Along with calling for states to significantly increase funding for tobacco prevention and cessation programs, the new report calls on Congress to ensure that health-care reform legislation provides adequate funding for anti-tobacco programs and makes it mandatory for Medicaid and other health insurance programs to cover medications and counseling for people trying to quit smoking.

    "The inadequate funding of tobacco prevention and cessation programs is a powerful example of misplaced priorities in our nation's health-care sys
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