Impact of Tobacco-Control Legislation

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Abstract

Oncology nurses should be aware of smoking-related public health legislation and tobacco use prevention resources as well as increase their knowledge of psycho-education materials, medications, and products available to aid smoking cessation. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death; one out of five deaths in the United States is attributed to smoking. Each day, almost 4,000 Americans younger than age 18 try their first cigarette, and 1,000 of those youths will become regular smokers. In 2009, House Resolution 1256: The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act gave the U.S. Food and Drug Administration the authority to regulate tobacco products with emphasis placed on prevention of the use by youth through graphic health warnings. Most states and many countries have enacted bans on smoking in all enclosed public places; however, some still allow smoking in adult-specific venues, such as bars, and some have not enacted any general statewide ban on smoking in any nongovernment-owned spaces. Oncology nurses can be instrumental in advocating for tobacco control legislation as well as providing and supporting services focused on smoking cessation and the prevention of tobacco use.

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