Public health tobacco control efforts have increasingly targeted communities in addition to individuals. Before population smoking decreases, effectiveness might be detected from initial outcomes reflecting these efforts, such as higher cigarette prices or more workplace and home smoking restrictions. Presumably, these initial outcomes will eventually influence smoking behavior. State-specific estimates of percentages of the population working or living under smoking bans are available from the 1992-1993 tobacco use supplement to the Current Population Survey, conducted annually by the US Bureau of the Census. In addition, the tobacco industry reports the average state cigarette price yearly. The authors constructed a tobacco control initial outcomes index (IOI) by using values of these variables for each state and correlated it with state-specific adult (aged ≥25 years) and youth (aged 15-24 years) smoking prevalence computed from the current Population Survey and per capita cigarette consumption data computed from sales and Census Bureau data. Both adult smoking prevalence (r= -0.70) and per capita consumption (r = -0.73) were significantly correlated with the IOI; youth smoking prevalence correlated less well (r = -0.34). Although the analysis is not definitive, deseasonalized 1983-1997 consumption trends for IOI-based tertile groups were divergent beginning in 1993, with the high IOI group showing the greatest decrease. A high relative IOI index may be predictive of future smoking decreases and should be considered when tobacco control efforts are evaluated.
- Outcome assessment (health care)
- Public health
ASJC Scopus subject areas