The Virginia Department of Health’s (VDH) Tobacco Use Control Project (TUCP) has released a report presenting the Virginia findings from the 2009-10 National Adult Tobacco Survey (NATS). An average of 9,242 Virginians who smoke or formerly smoke die each year from smoking-related causes.[i] Healthcare costs associated with smoking–related illness in Virginia are over two billion dollars; this amount excludes health costs attributable to second-hand smoke (SHS) exposure, and health costs associated with the use of tobacco products other than cigarettes.[ii] Additionally, productivity losses cost tax payers $2.53 billion dollars annually. In this report, data from the Virginia sample of the 2009-2010 National Adult Tobacco Survey (NATS) was used to examine the behaviors, opinions, and experiences of adults in Virginia around tobacco use. Achieving a better understanding of why people in Virginia smoke, factors that contribute to successful smoking cessation, and demonstration of widespread support for SHS prevention in shared spaces will all help to decrease the proportion of people in Virginia affected by tobacco use.
[i] CDC, “State-Specific Smoking-Attributable Mortality and Years of Potential Life Lost — United States, 2000-2004,” (MMWR) 58(2), January 22, 2009.
[ii] Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/facts_issues/toll_us/virginia. Accessed November 15, 2011.