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Great American Smokeout --- November 15, 2007

In 2006, approximately 45.3 million (one in five) U.S. adults were current smokers (1). November 15, 2007, marks the American Cancer Society's 31st annual Great American Smokeout, an event designed to encourage cigarette smokers to quit smoking for at least 1 day so that they might quit permanently. Smoking cessation has substantial and immediate health benefits for men and women of all ages (2).

Smokers who use effective cessation aids such as clinician assistance, pharmacotherapy approved by the Food and Drug Administration, and behavioral counseling (e.g., quitlines) can increase their likelihood of quitting permanently (3). All 50 states, the District of Columbia, and certain U.S. territories have quitlines that can be reached at 800-QUIT-NOW (800-784-8669). Other interventions that increase cessation include implementing sustained media campaigns, reducing patient out-of-pocket treatment costs, increasing the price of tobacco products, and establishing smoke-free environments (4).

Information on the Great American Smokeout is available at http://www.cancer.org/docroot/ped/ped_10_4.asp or by telephone: 800-227-2345. Advice on how to quit smoking is available at http://www.smokefree.gov.

References

  1. CDC. Cigarette smoking among adults---United States, 2006. MMWR 2007;56:1157--61.
  2. US Department of Health and Human Services. The health benefits of smoking cessation: a report of the Surgeon General. Rockville, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 1990.
  3. Fiore MC, Bailey WC, Cohen SJ, et al. Treating tobacco use and dependence: clinical practice guidelines. Rockville, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service; 2000. AHQR publication no. 00-0032.
  4. CDC. The guide to community preventive services: tobacco. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2006. Available at http://www.thecommunityguide.org/tobacco.



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