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One out of Five People Still Smoke Cigarettes

In all, 19% of adults in the U.S. called themselves smokers in 2011

November 9, 2012 – Between 2010 and 2011, the percentage of smokers in the U.S. remained relatively the same, but over a longer period of time heavy smoking has dropped significantly, said the Center for Disease Control.

In all, 19% of adults in the U.S. called themselves smokers in 2011. That was down 0.3% from 2010. However, amongst those who called themselves heavy daily smokers, the proportion who said they smoked daily 30 plus cigarettes each day, dropped by over 25% in the past 7 years.

Funding at the state level for programs dealing with tobacco control fell short of recommendations made by the CDC. Even though there has been an increase in excise tax income, state funding has decrease for tobacco related program over the last 5 years.

The new report, which coincides with the country’s 37th annual celebration of the Great American Smokeout, emphasizes the continuing economic and health burdens brought on by smoking. Annually over 443,000 deaths occur due to illnesses that are smoking related. Over $96 billion of direct medical expenses are incurred annually and lost productivity amounts to over $97 billion each year.

The CDC’s report used a sample of over 33,000 adults. The survey showed no substantial difference in the amount of smoking from 2010 to 2011. In the U.S., an estimated 43.85 million people smoke. Over 34.2 million smoked each day, which is over 77% of the total.

It is also estimated that 21.6% of all men and 16.5% of all women smoke. In the age group 25 to 55 over 22.1% smoked, which was the largest percentage for an age group. The lowest percentage for an age group was 65 years of age or older and only 7.9% smoke in that group.

Funding for tobacco control programs was lower than the recommended levels by 25% in 27 of the 50 U.S. states.

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