Friday, June 12, 2009

States Vary Widely in Tobacco-Control Efforts

A new study shows that most states still aren't making good use of tobacco control tools that have been proven to work.

According to the report - Cigarette Smoking Prevalence and Policies in the 50 States: An Era of Change -- the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ImpacTeen Tobacco Chart Book -says a combination of outreach programs, legislation, cigarette price increases and coverage for and access to stop-smoking treatments has been proven effective in reducing smoking rates and protect nonsmokers. Even so, there is wide variation in cigarette smoking prevalence across states and a clear relationship between smoking prevalence and the rate of mortality that can be attributed to smoking.

For example, approximately 27 percent of adult Medicaid recipients were smokers in 2006 - significantly higher than the 17 percent rate among adults with private insurance. But in that same year, Medicaid programs in a dozen states still did not provide coverage for proven tobacco treatment to their clients who smoked.


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