American Lung Association releases State of Tobacco Control report

Virginia is listed as one of the states with the worst policies to prevent, reduce tobacco use

On Wednesday, the American Lung Association released its State of Tobacco Control Report. This year they listed Virginia as one of the states with the worst policies to prevent and reduce tobacco use.

The report covers tobacco prevention and control program funding, smoke-free air, tobacco taxes, and more.

Virginia’s tobacco taxes are one of the lowest in the nation.

According to the report, the tax rate per pack of 20 cigarettes is 60 cents. Washington D.C., which has one of the best tobacco control reports, charges a tax of $4.50.

Experts with the ALA also recommended increasing the price of all tobacco products.

“When you raise tobacco taxes for every ten percent increase in the price of cigarettes it reduces consumption by about four percent among adults and seven percent among youth,” Aleks Casper, Director of Advocacy for the American Lung Association said.

We’re told investment in prevention is also important.

Virginia also has one of the highest percentages of high school tobacco use rates at 22.5 percent. The national average is around 16 percent.

“We have seen our youth vaping rates continue to increase. They are at an epidemic level. I think they are drawn to the flavors they have been marketed to. They are accessible in certain places,” Aleks Casper, Director of Advocacy for the American Lung Association said.

On the other hand, our adult tobacco use rate is 12.5 percent, which is right around the national average.

The American Lung Association said this yearly report gives an opportunity to improve the health of the Commonwealth.

However, Virginia did receive recognition for providing comprehensive coverage for all medications that help you quit smoking and counseling.

You can find more information and report findings here.


About the Authors:

Alli Graham came aboard the digital team as an evening digital content producer in June 2022.

Brittany Wier joined the 10 News team as the morning reporter in August 2021.