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Report shows decline in youth smoking, but work remains

d continued progress are needed in order to reach that goal," said Scott Leischow, Ph.D., chief of NCI's Tobacco Control Research Branch.

Several chapters in the NCI monograph present data on various racial/ethnic groups, including descriptions and explanations of smoking behavior among African American, Hispanic/Latino, Asian American and Pacific Islander, and American Indian and Alaskan Native adolescents. Smoking rates vary by ethnic group, with American Indian and Alaskan Native adolescents showing the highest rate and African American adolescents showing the lowest. The authors describe protective factors - such as religious involvement and participation in high school sports programs - that may contribute to lower smoking rates in certain populations, and risk factors - such as poverty - that might lead to higher smoking rates in others.

The monograph addresses large-scale influences on the smoking behavior of adolescents, including access, marketing, and cost of tobacco products. The data on youth access show that young people continue to obtain cigarettes both from noncommercial sources, such as friends and family members, and from commercial sources, such as convenience stores, even though cigarette sales are prohibited to individuals under the age of 18.

The data on the effect of cost show that youth are more responsive to cigarette price increases than are adults. A 10 percent increase in the price of cigarettes is estimated to reduce youth smoking by 5 percent or more. In addition, evidence exists that youth are more likely to quit smoking as cigarette prices are increased.

Chapters in the monograph also explore the results from statewide tobacco control programs in Massachusetts, California, and Florida. The authors examine the predictors of tobacco use among youth and describe the impact of the programs. In California, for example, following the enactment of Proposition 99 - which provid
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Contact: NCI Press Office
ncipressofficers@mail.nih.gov
301-496-6641
NIH/National Cancer Institute
2-Apr-2002


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