Prominent public health scientists admit that landmark Tobacco Control Act approved last year by the U.S. Congress has not only given the U.S. Food and Drug Administration the authority to regulate tobacco products, but is also a major step to eliminating cigarette smoking across the country within 30-40 years.
Such findings were established by the University of Wisconsin-Madison research group led by Michael Fiore and Timothy Baker. The research is published in online issue of Journal of Clinical Medicine. During the research, the scientists analyzed the major landmarks in reducing tobacco usage across the nation and developed their strategy to crack down cigarette smoking within a couple of decades. The scientists also analyzed the information collected by Wisconsin Department of Public Health from 1960 to 2007.
Timothy Baker, leading researcher admitted that numerous experts confirmed that the level of smoking is declining, and though the rate of the drop is not very considerable if comparing the last two decades, yet, the rate is huge in comparison with that registered in the 1960s, before the landmark report of the Surgeon General about the dangers of tobacco consumption.
In conformity with the stats provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention nationwide adult smoking rates have been dropping 0.5 percentage points annually from 43% reported in 1965 down to 21.1% last year. These figures prove that the overall drop has been very considerable, and the efforts in the struggle with cigarette smoking have paid off.
According to the scientists, previous victories of the national efforts to crack down tobacco consumption include:
• Adoption of strict bans on smoking in public places
• Continuous rises in tobacco excise taxes with corresponding price increases
• Severe restrictions on marketing of tobacco products
• Placing larger and stronger health warning on packages of tobacco products.
• Implementing measures banning tobacco sales to adolescents
• Carrying out nationwide awareness-rising campaigns
• Invention of various nicotine-replacement therapies.
Timothy Baker stated that the findings underline the astonishing success in reducing tobacco consumption during the past decades; however, the achieved success should not mitigate responsibility and willingness to continue struggling with tobacco use in order to eliminate the habit completely in the nearest future.
The scientist added that when all the introduced and proposed strategies of eliminating smoking would be implemented, tobacco consumption would go into history in several decades.
The research is partly dedicated to the methods that should be approved throughout the USA in order to accelerate the decline in smoking rates. The following methods were mentioned in the research:
• Requiring all the states to adopt bans on smoking in public places.
• Raising excise taxes on tobacco products by 100 percent.
• Obliging cigarette makers to stop placing nicotine in their brands.
• Rising public awareness about the dangers of tobacco use
• Performing nationwide anti-smoking campaigns.
• Giving free nicotine-replacement therapies to every smoker willing to get rid of his habit.
Concluding the research, scientists urged lawmakers to regulate tobacco industry more strictly, ban menthol flavor in tobacco products and implement plain packaging bill.