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AMA to Denver Post: Support for CDC Anti-tobacco Campaign

March 19, 2012(published)

Denver Post
Letter to the Editor

To the Editor:

With a bold new anti-tobacco campaign from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, physicians won't be the only ones who see Americans suffering from tobacco-related diseases.

In keeping with our long-standing commitment to protect the health of the public, the American Medical Association supports the CDC's groundbreaking anti-tobacco media campaign. The campaign's use of hard-hitting graphic images is designed to help promote tobacco cessation and to cause young people to think twice before picking up a cigarette.

Tobacco use remains the No. 1 cause of preventable death in the U.S. with more than 440,000 tobacco-related deaths annually. According to a new tobacco report from the surgeon general, 1,200 Americans die each day from smoking. Shockingly, for every one of these deaths, two new young people begin smoking.

Physicians are working to treat tobacco-related diseases like cancer and heart disease and to prevent them from occurring in the first place. To combat tobacco use, the AMA strongly supports graphic warning labels on cigarettes, comprehensive smoke-free laws, efforts to prevent youth smoking and adequate funding of evidence-based tobacco prevention and treatment programs.

Peter W. Carmel, MD
President, American Medical Association