Smoke-free Laws Don’t Harm Business

In National News on August 8, 2011 at 9:23 am

The June edition of the journal Nicotine & Tobacco Research found that smoke-free laws did not harm business in both rural and urban areas of Kentucky and Ohio. Here is the abstract from the study:

Introduction: Numerous empirical studies have examined the influence of smoke-free legislation on economic activity, with most finding a null effect. The influence could possibly differ
in rural areas relative to urban areas due to differing rates of smoking prevalence and access to prevention and treatment programs. Furthermore, the discussion of the effectiveness of smoke-free laws has been extended to consider local ordinances relative to statewide laws. This study examines these issues using
21 local laws in Kentucky and the Ohio statewide smoke-free law.

Methods: The number of employees, total wages paid, and number of reporting establishments in all hospitality and accommodation services in Kentucky and Ohio counties were documented, beginning the first quarter 2001 and ending the last quarter of 2009. A generalized estimating equation timeseries design is used to estimate the impact of local and state smoke-free laws in Kentucky and Ohio rural and urban

Results: There is no evidence that the economies in Kentucky counties were affected in any way from the implementation of local smoke-free laws. There was also no evidence that total employment or the number of establishments was influenced by the statewide law in Ohio, but wages increased following the implementation of the law. Furthermore, there is no evidence that either rural or urban counties experienced a loss of economic activity following smoke-free legislation.

Conclusions: The study finds no evidence that local or state smoke-free legislation negatively influences local economies in either rural or urban communities.


CDC MMWR Report Shows Decrease Of Smoking In Movies

In National News on July 15, 2011 at 8:38 am

The CDC Office on Smoking and Health recently released a data relating to a new study, which is the first to compare major motion picture companies that have adopted a tobacco reduction policy to those without such a policy. Reducing smoking incidents in movies is important because studies have found that 44% of youth smoking initiation can be attributed to viewing tobacco incidents in movies.

MMWR Highlights Changes in Onscreen Smoking Incidents in Youth-Rated Movies (2005 – 2010)
  • Total number of onscreen tobacco incidents in youth-rated movies: 595 in 2010 versus 2093 in 2005
  • Total incidents decreased 71.6% from 2005 to 2010
  • Average number of incidents per youth-rated movie: 6.8 in 2010 versus 20.1 in 2005
  • Average incidents per movie decreased 66.2% from 2005 to 2010
Smoking-Reduction Policies
  • Only three of the six major studios have a published, written smoking reduction policy in place.
  • Those studios had reductions in tobacco use depictions in youth-rated movies between 2005 –2010 ranging from 91.5% to 98.9%.
  • The three major studios and Independent studios with no published, written smoking reduction policy had reductions ranging from 26.4% to 62.7% in the same time period.

Read it for yourself here:


Report Finds Smokers Consider Quitting Due To Graphic Health Warnings On Packages

In National News on June 1, 2011 at 7:31 am

Health warnings on cigarette packages prompt smokers to think about quitting, according to a 14-nation study. Effective warning labels as a component of comprehensive tobacco control can help save lives by reducing tobacco use, said a report released by CDC.

The study, published in yesterday’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, finds adult usage of manufactured cigarettes varied widely in the 14 countries surveyed: Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Mexico, Philippines, Poland, the Russian Federation, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay and Vietnam.

Among men, prevalence ranged from 9.6 percent (India) to 59.3 percent (Russian Federation). Among women, prevalence was highest in Poland (22.9 percent) and less than 2 percent in Bangladesh, China, Egypt, India, Thailand, and Vietnam.

The Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) was conducted once in each of the 14 countries between 2008-2010 by national governments, ministries of health, survey implementing agencies and international partners through face-to-face personal interviews using electronic data collection.

“Tobacco kills more than 5 million people a year – more than HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria combined – and will kill more than 1 billion people in this century unless urgent action is taken,” said CDC director Thomas R. Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “Warning labels motivate smokers to quit and discourage nonsmokers from starting, are well accepted by the public, and can be effectively implemented at virtually no cost to governments.”

According to the report, the vast majority of men that use manufactured cigarettes noticed package warning labels-more than 90 percent of men in all countries except India (78.4 percent) and Mexico (83.5 percent). Among women, more than 90 percent in seven of the 14 countries reported noticing package warnings, and at least 75 percent in 12 of 14 countries reported noticing a package warning.

Among those who noticed package warnings, data suggest there was substantial interest in quitting because of the warnings. Prominent, pictorial warnings are most effective in communicating the harms of smoking, and use of such warnings is strongly encouraged by CDC and the World Health Organization (WHO).

At the time the surveys were conducted, five of the 14 countries participating in the survey had adopted pictorial warnings already. Since that time, four additional countries have passed legislation requiring pictorial warnings.

The World Health Organization has developed MPOWER, a package of strategies to reduce global tobacco use. Among the six elements outlined in the MPOWER package, the WHO has identified the following strategies as “best buys,” or high impact cost-effective initiatives, due to the impact these strategies can have to prevent tobacco initiation, increase cessation, and reduce public acceptance of tobacco use: price increases; smoke-free policies; bans or comprehensive restrictions on tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship, and provision of tobacco-related health information via mass media campaigns and graphic health warnings to the public.

On May 31, many countries observed World No Tobacco Day – an annual event sponsored by WHO – to help raise public awareness of the dangers of tobacco use. This year′s theme is “The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).”

The FCTC is an international global public health treaty adopted by the World Health Assembly in 2003 to address the global burden of tobacco. Article 11 of the FCTC requires health warnings on tobacco product packages sold in countries that have ratified the treaty.

Launched in February 2007, GATS is a nationally representative household survey of all non-institutionalized, men and women ages 15 years old and older. The GATS is intended to enhance the capacity of countries to design, implement, and evaluate tobacco control and prevention programs. Funding for GATS is provided by the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use and is conducted in partnership with the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, CDC Foundation, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, World Health Organization, and the World Lung Foundation.

For an online version of the MMWR report, visit For information on World No Tobacco Day, visit, and for additional information and materials, including posters, visit WHO’s Tobacco Free Initiative at