Where the tobacco money went

An occasional snapshot of current facts and trends in medicine.

Quick View. Posted March 26, 2007

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Money from a major tobacco settlement went to a lot more than just tobacco programs.

In 1998, 46 state attorneys general and four of the nation's largest tobacco companies reached what became known as a Master Settlement Agreement to dispense with lawsuits from those states seeking to recoup the health care costs of treating smoking-related illness. The deal involved an estimated $200 billion in payments over the first 25 years of the agreement, with payments to continue in perpetuity.

A recent study by the Government Accountability Office concluded that the states received $52.6 billion in payments from the MSA from fiscal 2000 to 2005. States spent the money in the following ways:

Source: "Tobacco Settlement: States' Allocation of Payments from Tobacco Companies for Fiscal Years 2000 through 2005," Government Accountability Office, Feb. 27

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