Secondhand Smoke Exposure Costs $390.3 Million Per Year In Indiana

In State News on February 3, 2009 at 9:03 am

Secondhand smoke costs Indiana residents $390.3 million yearly in health care and premature loss of life, according to a new study released today by researchers from the Bowen Research Center of the Indiana University School of Medicine.

The study measured the costs of secondhand smoke-related morbidity and mortality to residents of the State of Indiana, and found that Hoosiers were estimated to pay $282.5 million in direct health care costs caused by secondhand smoke each year, and to suffer $107.8 million in premature loss of life costs annually because of secondhand smoke, for a total cost of $390.3 million yearly. This amount breaks down to an annual cost of $62 per Hoosier due to secondhand smoke.

Lead study author, Terrell Zollinger, Dr.P.H., M.S.P.H., Associate Director of the Bowen Research Center, said, “Research clearly shows that exposure to secondhand smoke not only adversely affects the health and quality of life of nonsmokers, but also costs us a significant amount of money in excessive health care costs and premature deaths. Applying the knowledge gained by recent research studies to Indiana and using conservative estimates, we found that the economic impact of secondhand smoke for our state was at least $390.3 million or approximately $62 for each Indiana resident in 2007. Who pays these dollars? We all do in increased premiums for health and life insurance, increased taxes to provide care through government programs, and increased costs of goods and services.”

The high cost of secondhand smoke exposure to Hoosiers also costs Indiana in terms of jobs and economic development, according to former Indiana Commerce Secretary and Indianapolis Business Journal co-owner Michael S. “Mickey”Maurer.


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