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December 17, 1997

State-Specific Prevalence of Cigarette Smoking Among Adults, and Children's and Adolescents' Exposure to Environmental Tobacco Smoke—United States, 1996

JAMA. 1997;278(23):2056-2057. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03550230032014

IN 1996, the prevalence of cigarette smoking was added to the list of nationally notifiable health conditions reported by states to CDC.1 The addition of a health-related behavior to the list of diseases and illnesses reflected the recognized role of tobacco use as the leading preventable cause of death in the United States.2 This report summarizes the 1996 prevalence of current smoking among adults in 49 states and the District of Columbia and presents statespecific estimates of environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure for children and adolescents residing in homes where adults smoke. The findings indicate that state-specific smoking prevalence among adults varied twofold and that approximately 15 million children and adolescents were exposed to ETS in their home.

State-specific data about adult smoking prevalence were obtained from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), a state-based, randomdigit-dialed telephone survey of the noninstitutionalized U.S. population aged >18 years. The