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West Virginia Cessation Program
Tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of death in the United States. Smoking harms nearly every organ of the body, causing many diseases and affecting the health of smokers in general. Quitting smoking has immediate as well as long-term benefits for you and your loved ones.

Tobacco use in West Virginia:

The consequences of tobacco use are well known to West Virginians, yet
residents continue to use tobacco in alarming numbers. 

While West Virginia is aggressively addressing the problem by implementing evidence-based tobacco control programs through the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Bureau for Public Health’s Division of Tobacco Prevention, a
nnual federal and state funding for these efforts has dramatically decreased over the past five years to $1.595 million annually. 

West Virginia Tobacco Use Statistics:

West Virginia continues to have the highest reported adult smoking rates in the nation:  25.2% of adults living in West Virginia are current smokers - smoking every day or some days.  The national smoking prevalence for adults is 15.5% (BRFSS, 2018).

Gender - Men: 25.7% and Women: 24.8% reported current smoking in 2018.

Age - The prevalence of smoking is higher among those aged 18-54 than those aged 55 and older.  The prevalence of smoking is significantly lower among those 55-64 (26.7%) and those aged 65 and older (13.9%) than among any other age group.  The prevalence of smoking is highest in the 25-34 age group (34.8%).

Education - The prevalence of smoking is lowest among college graduates (11.3%) and is significantly lower than all other education groups.  Adults with less than a high school diploma have the highest prevalence of current cigarette smoking (44.2%), and the prevalence is significantly higher than all other education groups.

Other West Virginia data and facts to consider (from WV SAMMEC data 2006-2010):

·         10 WV residents die each day because they smoked cigarettes.

·         19% of the State’s mortality among adults age 35 & older is attributed to smoking

·         Smoking and smoking-related illnesses annually cost WV employers $1,865 per smoker in excess medical expenses.

·         Smoking and smoking-related illnesses annually amount to $2,811 per smoker in lost productivity.

The U.S. surgeon General has recently released a Best Practices User Guide:  Cessation in Tobacco Prevention and Control.  To view this report click here.

For More Information about the Tobacco Cessation Program contact Michele Bowles at
Department of Health and Human Resources
350 Capitol Street | Room 514 | Charleston, WV 25301 | Phone: (304) 356-4193 | Toll-free: (866) 384-5250 | Fax: (304) 558-1553

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