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Study estimates tobacco control in US has saved 8 million lives in last 50 years
Date:1/7/2014

Researchers estimate that tobacco control in the U.S. since 1964 has been associated with the avoidance of an estimated 8 million premature smoking-attributable deaths, with the beneficiaries of these avoided early deaths having gained, on average, nearly 2 decades of life, according to a study in the January 8 issue of JAMA. The authors add that smoking-attributable death occurred in approximately 17.7 million people during this time period, and that efforts must continue to reduce the effect of smoking on the nation's death toll.

"January 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the first surgeon general's report on smoking and health. The report inaugurated efforts to reduce cigarette smoking and its effects on health. Those efforts by governments, voluntary organizations, and the private sectoreducation on smoking's dangers, increases in cigarette taxes, smoke-free air laws, media campaigns, marketing and sales restrictions, lawsuits, and cessation treatment programshave comprised the nation's tobacco control efforts," according to background information in the article.

Theodore R. Holford, Ph.D., of the Yale University School of Public Health, New Haven, Conn., and colleagues conducted a study to model reductions in smoking-related mortality associated with implementation of tobacco control since 1964. Smoking histories for individual birth cohorts that actually occurred and under likely scenarios had tobacco control never emerged were estimated. National mortality rates and mortality rate ratio estimates from analytical studies of the effect of smoking on mortality yielded death rates by smoking status. Actual smoking-related mortality from 1964 through 2012 was compared with estimated mortality under no tobacco control. National Health Interview Surveys yielded cigarette smoking histories for the U.S. adult population in 1964-2012.

The model estimated that a total of 17.7 million smoking-attributable deaths occurred between 19
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Contact: Helen Dodson
helen.dodson@yale.edu
203-436-3984
The JAMA Network Journals
Source:Eurekalert

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