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NAQC Newsroom: Tobacco Control

CDC MMWR - Current Tobacco Use Among Middle and High School Students—United States, 2011

Thursday, August 9, 2012  
Posted by: Natalia Gromov

Current Tobacco Use Among Middle and High School Students—United States, 2011

Tobacco use among American middle school and high school students showed a slow decline from 2000 to 2011, but the steep rate of decline from 1997 to 2003 has slowed noticeably with steady funding cuts to state tobacco control programs since 2002.

Although tobacco use continued an 11-year downward trend, from 2009 to 2011, no changes were observed among middle school students and tobacco use remains high among high school students. For example, among black high school students, cigar use increased significantly from 7.1 percent in 2009 to 11.7 percent in 2011. Nearly 30 percent of high school males and 18 percent of high school females used some form of tobacco in 2011, while more than 8 percent of middle school males and nearly 6 percent of middle school females used some form of tobacco. Cigarette use declined from 19.2 percent in 2009 to 15.8 percent in 2011 among Hispanic high school students.

The report reaffirms the need to return youth tobacco use trends to the more rapid rate of decline seen from the late 1990s through 2003. To further reduce tobacco use among young people, the 2012 Surgeon General’s Report recommends making tobacco products less affordable, running hard-hitting mass media campaigns, and adequately funding evidence-based tobacco prevention and control programs that will work in conjunction with new Food and Drug Administration regulations restricting the sale, distribution, and marketing of cigarettes and other tobacco products to youth.

The online version of the journal is available on the CDC Web site at

Links: Copy of the August 10 MMWR; MMWR Highlights; CDC Press Release

Source: CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health

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