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Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report

Serum Antibody Response to the Novel Influenza A (H1N1) Virus After Vaccination with Seasonal Trivalent Influenza Vaccine – Untied States, 2009

Press Contact: CDC Division of Media Relations
Phone: (404) 639-3286

Because infections with this novel H1N1 virus have occurred mainly in younger people as of today, it appears that older people may have antibodies that help ward off infection. This study involved analyzing stored serum samples from over 350 people in various age groups ranging from 6 months to over 60 years of age. CDC analyzed antibodies in serum from people both before and after they were vaccinated with seasonal influenza vaccines from the previous four seasons. These seasonal vaccines contained H1N1 viruses. Results suggest that adults may have some degree of preexisting cross-reactive antibody to the novel H1N1 flu virus, especially among older adults. However, we do not know if such antibodies provide any protection against the novel influenza A (H1N1). A possible explanation to this preexisting immunity in adults is that they may have had previous exposure, either through infection or vaccination to an influenza A H1N1 virus that was more closely related to the novel H1N1 flu virus than are contemporary seasonal H1N1 strains.

Federal and State Cigarette Excise Taxes – United States, 1995-2009

Press Contact: Matt McKenna, Director, Office on Smoking and Health, CDC
Phone: (770) 488-5493

Tobacco tax increases are an important policy tool that can reduce smoking rates and fund state anti-tobacco programs. On April 1, 2009, the largest federal cigarette excise tax increase in history went into effect, increasing the tax on cigarettes from 39 cents to $1.01 per pack. When combined with the state average excise tax of $1.20 per pack, the United States has achieved the Healthy People 2010 objective to increase the combined federal and average state cigarette excise tax to at least $2 per pack. Excise tax increases are among the most effective tools in preventing tobacco use, particularly among youth and young adults. However, tobacco growing states and other bordering southeastern states have a cigarette tax rate substantially lower than the national average of $1.20 per pack. Price increases combined with other evidence-based policy and clinical interventions can be effective in meeting national health objectives to decrease smoking prevalence and reduce smoking-attributable death and disease.

Assessment of Health Warnings on Tobacco Products – Worldwide, 2007

Press Contact: Timothy O’Leary, Communications Officer, Tobacco Free Initiative, World Health Organization
Phone: +41 (0)22 791 5539

Placing health warnings on tobacco packages presents governments with a cost-effective measure to raise awareness of the health risks from tobacco use. Countries can require that packaging include larger health warnings, effective text, and pictures. Pictorial warnings combined with effective text warnings are synergistic and provide the maximum effect in providing information that also increases risk perception and cessation. In addition, pictorial warnings reach out to those segments of the population who cannot read. The World Health Organization urges countries to request for technical assistance for the implementation of picture warnings through the MPOWER package, the %ld W” of which stands for “Warn about the dangers of tobacco.” Tobacco companies have placed greater emphasis on product packaging as a marketing tool in response to legal restrictions placed on other marketing channels. Placing health warnings on tobacco product packages was one of the key evidence-based interventions included in the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO-FCTC) that came into force in 2005. Guidelines for the implementation of Article 11 (Packaging and labeling of tobacco products) of the WHO-FCTC were developed to provide a roadmap for countries to meet their WHO-FCTC obligations. This report assesses the current status of tobacco health warnings worldwide using data collected in 2007 from WHO′s Member States. The results show that there was a high proportion of member states that had no warnings or warnings that covered <30 percent of the principal display area; only five states were in the highest category with warnings that covered 50 percent or more of the principal display areas and met additional criteria on warnings.

Alcohol Use Among Women of Childbearing Age – United States, 1991-2005

Press Contact: CDC Division of Media Relations
Phone: (404) 639-3286

The study findings indicate that there has been little change between 1991 and 2005 in the prevalence of alcohol use among pregnant and nonpregnant women of childbearing age. Alcohol use during pregnancy continues to be an important public health concern. Health care professionals play a critical role in educating women about this issue and should routinely ask all women who are pregnant or who can become pregnant about their alcohol use, inform them of the risks of alcohol use while pregnant and advise then not to drink alcoholic beverages while pregnant. New study reveals that the number of women who drink alcohol while pregnant has not decreased from 1991 to 2005 despite past Surgeon Generals’ warnings about the dangers of drinking alcohol while pregnant. Over that time period, an average of approximately 1 in 8 women drank any amount of alcohol while pregnant, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The study also found that an average of 1 in 50 pregnant women engaged in binge drinking during the same 15-year time period. Any alcohol use and binge drinking among nonpregnant women of childbearing age remained stable as well.

Hospitalized Patients with Novel Influenza A (H1N1) Virus Infection – California, April-May, 2009

(Previously Released)

Press Contact: CDC Division of Media Relations
Phone: (404) 639-3286

No summary available.



  • Historical Document: May 21, 2009
  • Content source: Office of Enterprise Communication
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