Smoking rate not declining rapidly enough to meet public health goals

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Dec. 5, 2005

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The rate of cigarette smoking by adults went from 21.6% in 2003 to 20.9% in 2004, but public health officials say the numbers are not declining fast enough to meet the Healthy People 2010 goal of 12%, according to a report published last month in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

According to an analysis of National Health Interview Survey data by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Office on Smoking and Health, 81.3% of smokers light up every day, with the remainder smoking regularly but less often. Slightly more than 40% of those who were daily smokers had attempted to quit in the past year, and more than half of people in the United States who had ever been smokers have successfully given up the habit.

"More states need to fully implement comprehensive tobacco prevention and control programs if they are to achieve the Healthy People 2010 objective of reducing smoking prevalence to 12% or less," the authors wrote.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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