Smoking: A Health Hazard of Sufficient Importance – The First Surgeon General Report

Fifty years after the release of the first Surgeon General’s report on smoking and health, remarkable progress has been made. Since 1964, smoking prevalence among U.S. adults has been reduced by half. Unfortunately, tobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of disease, disability, and death in the United States. In January 2014, the Surgeon General release the 50th anniversary Surgeon General’s Report on smoking and health.[1][2]

The 2014 report highlights 50 years of progress in tobacco control and prevention, present new data on the health consequences of tobacco use, and detail initiatives that can end the tobacco use epidemic in the United States.

Accomplishment in the ‘War against Tobacco’
Researchers estimate that tobacco control in the U.S. since 1964 has been associated with the avoidance of an estimated 8 million premature smoking-attributable deaths, with the beneficiaries of these avoided early deaths having gained, on average, nearly 2 decades of life, according to a study in the January 8 issue of?JAMA.?The authors add that smoking-attributable death occurred in approximately 17.7 million people during this time period, and that efforts must continue to reduce the effect of smoking on the nation?s death toll.[3]

In the video (top): From the CBS archives: Harry Reasoner anchors a CBS News Extra “On Smoking and Health” following the 1964 release of the U.S. Surgeon General’s report linking smoking with disease and mortality.

Note: Harry Reasoner was an American journalist working for ABC?and CBS News,?known for his inventive use of language as a television commentator, and as a founder of the 60 Minutes program.

For more information:
[1] Tobacco Companies are Finally Moving Closer to Revealing the Truth about Smoking – 50 Years After First Surgeon General Report – Onco’Zine – The International Oncology Network, January 10, 2014.
[2] The Harmful Effects of Smoking Public: The Public Denial in the Early-mid 1960s
[3] Tobacco Control in U.S. Has Saved 8 Million Lives In Last 50 Years Onco’Zine – The International Oncology Network (January 7 2013)

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