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AMA Cheers Senate Passage of Historic Tobacco Regulation Bill

“Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act” moves closer to enactment

For immediate release
June 11, 2009

Statement attributable to:
Nancy Nielsen, MD
AMA President

“The AMA cheers Senate passage of legislation that will for the first time allow the FDA to strongly regulate cigarettes and other tobacco products. Passage of this historic legislation by both the House and Senate is a victory for public health over Big Tobacco.

“More than 400,000 Americans die needlessly every year as a direct result of tobacco use. The actions resulting from this landmark legislation may make people think twice before picking up a cigarette. The sad truth is that tobacco-related deaths are the number one preventable cause of death in the U.S. Physicians are working not only to treat diseases like cancer that result from tobacco use, but to prevent them from occurring in the first place.

“Passage of this legislation represents an important break from the past, as it signifies broad acceptance that nicotine is a drug harmful to people’s health. Tobacco companies will now have to disclose ingredients and use stronger warning labels.

“New bans on all outdoor tobacco advertising within 1,000 feet of schools and playgrounds and on tobacco-brand sponsorships of sports and entertainment events will help keep tobacco advertising away from kids. Approximately 1,000 kids become new, regular smokers every day. These new marketing restrictions can help keep our kids away from cigarettes so they can become healthy adults.”

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Contact:

Katherine Hatwell
AMA Media Relations
202-789-7419

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