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Publication of 1992 Surgeon General's Report on Smoking and Health

The 1992 report of the Surgeon General, Smoking and Health in the Americas, was released on March 12, 1992. The report, developed in collaboration with the Pan American Health Organization, examines epidemiologic, economic, historical, and legal aspects of tobacco use in the Americas.

The major conclusions of the report are:

  1. The prevalence of smoking in Latin America and the

Caribbean varies but is 50% or more among young persons in some urban areas; substantial numbers of women have begun smoking in recent years.

2. By 1985, an estimated minimum of 526,000 smoking-attributable deaths occurred yearly in the Americas; 100,000 of these deaths occurred in Latin America and the Caribbean.

3. In Latin America and the Caribbean, the current structure of the tobacco industry restricts smoking-control efforts.

4. The economic arguments for support of tobacco production are offset by the long-term economic effects of smoking-related disease.

5. Commitment to surveillance of tobacco-related factors (e.g., prevalence of smoking; morbidity and mortality; knowledge, attitudes, and practices; tobacco consumption and production; and taxation and legislation) is crucial to development of a systematic program for prevention and control of tobacco use.

An executive summary of the Surgeon General's report is available from the Public Information Branch, Office on Smoking and Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, CDC; telephone (404) 488-5705. Copies of the full report are available from the Superintendent of Documents, P.O. Box 371954, Pittsburgh, PA 15250-7954 (S/N 017-001-00478-2 for the English edition and S/N 017-001-00479-7 for the Spanish translation) for $12.00 each.

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