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Articles of Interest: Tobacco Cessation

If you can get even a small proportion of people to quit, then you’re talking about long-term cost savings of a sizeable magnitude.
How Firms Can Convince Employees to Quit Smoking
The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania

2018

"How Firms Can Convince Employees to Quit Smoking." The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, August 28, 2018.

Wellness programs are increasing in popularity as companies grow more determined to curb the soaring costs of providing health insurance for employees. To encourage healthy behaviors, firms are offering everything from free yoga classes to weight-loss support groups. While there have been some positive results from these programs, smoking cessation remains a particular challenge. But a recent study by two University of Pennsylvania experts found that cash can be a powerful incentive to help smokers quit. 

To mark World Lung Cancer Day on August 1st, Cancer Network spoke with Dr. Alan Blum, Professor and Gerald Leon Wallace, MD, Endowed Chair of Family Medicine at the University of Alabama School of Medicine, where he also directs the University’s Center for the Study of Tobacco and Society, which he founded in 1999. Dr. Blum is an expert on the history of tobacco use, tobacco industry marketing, and the anti-smoking movement. He is a renowned pioneer in creative physician-led public advocacy initiatives to counter the promotion of unhealthy products and lethal lifestyles. 

—Interviewed by Anna Azvolinsky

Australia made it mandatory in 2011 for cigarettes to be sold in drab-looking packets that carry health warnings.

Seven years on, the WTO has rejected complaints from four nations that the laws violate international trade.

Unless there is a successful appeal, the decision is expected to hasten similar regulations around the world.

Remarks by Scott Gottlieb, M.D., at the Tobacco Regulatory Science Program Meeting. "FDA’s Nicotine and Tobacco Regulation and the Key Role of Regulatory Science." Food and Drug Administration, June 18, 2018.

I speak to you during a moment of extraordinary promise for tobacco regulation. The FDA is engaged in a profound dialogue about the best ways to improve public health through the agency’s tobacco regulatory approaches under the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act.

A third of U.S. adult smokers — 12 million people — looked online for quit-smoking information and resources in 2017, more than double the number from 12 years ago. As more smokers turn to the internet for help to quit, they can increase their chances of success with a few tips for making the most of online tools and resources.

2017

Kanski, Alison. "FDA campaign reframes quitting for smokers." PR Week, December 19, 2017.

Every Try Counts, which will launch in January, is the FDA’s first smoking cessation campaign targeting adults. The FDA wants to reframe quitting smoking for this audience as a process that often takes more than one attempt.

Smoking rates have decreased substantially in the United States over the past several decades. But, unfortunately, too many smokers who are diagnosed with cancer don’t quit smoking.

Agency to pursue lowering nicotine in cigarettes to non-addictive levels and create more predictability in tobacco regulation

Tipperman, Doug, MSW. "Smoking Cessation May Improve Behavioral Health Conditions." NIH Collaborative Research on Addiction, May 10, 2017.

Cigarette smoking remains the single largest preventable cause of death and disease in the United States, responsible for over 480,000 deaths a year. Even though smoking has been decreasing overall, the smoking rate for persons with behavioral health conditions (mental and/or substance use disorders) is about twice that of the rest of the population. The rate is even higher for persons with serious mental illness or who have been in substance use disorder treatment in the past year.

Terry, Michael, John Seffrin, Ph.D., K. Michael Cummings, Ph.D., Allan Erickson, and Donald Shopland. "Ending Cigarette Use by Adults in a Generation is Possible." March 2017.

Chronic exposure to tobacco smoke is the single largest cause of preventable illness and premature death in the United States today. In spite of significant progress in tobacco control over the last half century, tobacco use is still the cause of nearly one in every four deaths daily in America.

2013

Schroeder, Steven A., M.D. "New Evidence That Cigarette Smoking Remains the Most Important Health Hazard." New England Journal of Medicine, January 24, 2013.

Everyone knows cigarette smoking is bad for you. Most people in the United States assume that smoking is on its way out. But the grim reality is that smoking still exerts an enormous toll on the health of Americans, as documented in two articles in this issue of the Journal. Both articles review mortality trends over time for men and women according to smoking status, and both confirm that smoking remains a huge threat to the public's health.