Tobacco’s Price is Largest Factor in Reducing Smoking Prevalence

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The latest study published in the November 2012 supplement to the American Journal of Preventive Medicine demonstrates that the cost of tobacco is the biggest contributing aspect to decreasing smoking prevalence in Minnesota. Extra price hikes and supporting a good system of other tobacco systems and policies could give the smoking prevalence rate below 10% and save 55,000 lives within the next 30 years.

This study, the Minnesota SimSmoke model, was carried out by Dr. Raymond Boyle of ClearWay MinnesotaSM and Dr. David Levy of Georgetown University. The simulation model considered to be data on present, new and former smokers from 1993 to 2011 to identify the performance of specific tobacco policies and programs on smoking rates in Minnesota. The SimSmoke model then planned the life-saving potential of these systems later in life.

“SimSmoke presents new proof that a detailed strategy to reducing tobacco consumption in the state is effective,” said Dr. Raymond Boyle, Ph.D., M.P.H., Director of Research at ClearWay Minnesota. “If people want to get serious about reducing tobacco-related disease we need to keep to to a multi-pronged technique that contains increasing the price of tobacco products.”

Collectively, policies and systems such as tobacco tax hikes, smoke-free air legislations, media strategies, strong youth access rules and smoking cessation programs led to a 29% decrease in smoking prevalence in the state between 1993 and 2011. Price increases alone comprised a 43% decrease.

“The SimSmoke model has been promoted across the country and worldwide, and the effects are noticeably identical,” said Dr. David Levy of Georgetown University. “Whether it is looked at information for Minnesota, Kentucky, California or England, SimSmoke precisely forecasts existing adult smoking rates, which is powerful. But what is more powerful is the capability to forecast future smoking rates and how modifications – such as increasing cigarettes taxes – will modify the smoking rate and the number of smoking-related diseases.”

Another study involved in the AJPM supplement is targeted on the effect of indoor-air policies, smoking prevalence and accessibility to procedure among priority populations and the control of menthol tobacco products.

Starting from 2000, ClearWay Minnesota has given more than $17 million in funds to Minnesota scientists. The effect of ClearWay Minnesota-funded study has been felt well beyond Minnesota’s boundaries and has considerably contributed to the science base in the field of tobacco control.

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