Tobacco use has been found to be one of the primary drivers of cancer-related health disparities because its use disproportionately impacts people based on race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability status, mental health, income level, education level, and geographic location. Achieving health equity relies heavily on eliminating tobacco use. ACS CAN is pursuing fact-based tobacco control policies at the local, state and federal levels that aim to reduce disparities and improve health outcomes for everyone.
The Critical Need to Adequately Fund Tobacco Prevention and Control Programs
Sustained, dedicated federal investment in tobacco control through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Office of Smoking and Health (OSH) is necessary to prevent initiation of tobacco products, monitor tobacco product use, identify tobacco related disparities, and promote effective strategies to help individuals who use tobacco products to successfully quit. This is especially important since tobacco use is one of the primary drivers of cancer-related health disparities because its use disproportionately impacts people based on race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability status, mental health, income and education levels, and geographic location.[i],[ii],[iii] Our ability to continue to make progress against cancer relies on sustained and increased funding in comprehensive tobacco control programs.[iv]
ACS CAN is pursuing evidence-based policies to reduce tobacco-related disparities and improve health outcomes for all individuals. ACS CAN urges Congress to provide $310 million - a $63.5 million increase - in funding for the OSH and opposes any cuts to its budget. Any cuts to the program could have devastating consequences to our progress on reducing the suffering and death caused by tobacco use, especially since cigarette smoking still causes about 30% of all cancer deaths.[v],[vi]
[i] Irvin Vidrine J, Reitzel LR, Wetter DW. The role of tobacco in cancer health disparities. Curr Oncol Rep. 2009 Nov;11(6):475-81. doi: 10.1007/s11912-009-0064-9. PMID: 19840525; PMCID: PMC5031414.
[ii] Webb Hooper M. Editorial: Preventing Tobacco-Related Cancer Disparities: A Focus on Racial/Ethnic Minority Populations. Ethn Dis. 2018 Jul 12;28(3):129-132. doi: 10.18865/ed.28.3.129. PMID: 30038472; PMCID: PMC6051506.
[iii] Tong EK, Fagan P, Cooper L, Canto M, Carroll W, Foster-Bey J, Hébert JR, Lopez-Class M, Ma GX, Nez Henderson P, Pérez-Stable EJ, Santos L, Smith JH, Tan Y, Tsoh J, Chu K. Working to Eliminate Cancer Health Disparities from Tobacco: A Review of the National Cancer Institute's Community Networks Program. Nicotine Tob Res. 2015 Aug;17(8):908-23. doi: 10.1093/ntr/ntv069. PMID: 26180215; PMCID: PMC4542844.
[iv] U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2014.
[v] Islami F, Goding Sauer A, Miller KD, et al. Proportion and number of cancer cases and deaths attributable to potentially modifiable risk factors in the United States. CA Cancer J Clin. 2018;68(1): 31-54.
[vi] Jacobs EJ, Newton CC, Carter BD, et al. What proportion of cancer deaths in the contemporary United States is attributable to cigarette smoking? Ann Epidemiol. 2015;25(3): 179-182.