US government failing on tobacco reduction, says new report
The 2022 State of Tobacco Control gave the federal government the following ratings:
“In 2022, the country must redouble its efforts to adopt the proven policies called for in the ‘State of Tobacco Control’ to help end smoking. We cannot afford to wait another 20 years and enable another generation to suffer from tobacco-causing addiction, disease and death. This will require a new commitment at the federal, state and local levels to save lives,” said Harold Wimmer, President and CEO of the American Lung Association.
The reports urge the FDA to regulate synthetic nicotine as a drug, warning that e-cigarette companies are exploiting synthetic nicotine as an “attempt to evade tobacco control law.”
Overall adult smoking has declined, according to the report, but smoking remains high among Native Americans, Alaska Natives and lesbian, gay and bisexual adults.
Additionally, menthol cigarettes are a “key contributor to tobacco-related death and disease in black communities.”
The report also notes that cigarette sales increased during the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, but it is unclear whether this “signals higher smoking rates among adults or whether current smokers are smoking more cigarettes. “.
They also urge the government to limit health plans that are not required to cover treatment to help people quit smoking and call on Congress to pass the ‘COVID-19 Quitting Act’ . This legislation would give all Medicaid enrollees access to a smoking cessation benefit.