National Press Club

End the Tobacco Epidemic for Good

End the Tobacco Epidemic for Good

January 8, 2014 10:00 AM

Location: Zenger Room

Peter Hamm, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, 202-296-5469
Julia Cartwright, Legacy®, 202-454-5596
Lauren Walens, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, 202-661-5763
Retha Sherrod, American Heart Association, 202-785-7929
Gregg Tubbs, American Lung Association, 202-715-3469
Jamie Poslosky, American Academy of Pediatrics, 202-724-3301
Bronson Frick, Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights, 510-841-3032

Health Leaders to Mark 50th Anniversary
Of First Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health,
Call for Bold Action to End the Tobacco Epidemic for Good

WASHINGTON, DC – Leading public health and medical organizations will hold a press conference at 10 am on January 8, 2014, to recognize the 50th anniversary of the first Surgeon General’s report on smoking and health and call for a national commitment to end the tobacco epidemic for good.
The first Surgeon General’s report, issued January 11, 1964, was a historic turning point in the fight against tobacco use. The U.S. has made enormous progress over 50 years, cutting smoking rates by more than half and per capita consumption of cigarettes by more than 70 percent.
Next Thursday, January 16, the Surgeon General will release the 50th anniversary Surgeon General’s report on smoking and health. New data being released in that report and in leading health journals this week will demonstrate clearly that reducing tobacco use has had the single greatest impact on the nation's health over the last 50 years. But tobacco use remains the nation’s number one cause of preventable death, killing 443,000 Americans and costing the nation $193 billion in health care expenditures and lost productivity each year.
The public health and medical organization leaders will announce bold new goals for reducing tobacco use and challenge the nation to achieve them within a decade. On the anniversary of the first Surgeon General’s report, it’s time for the nation to commit to ending the tobacco epidemic and eliminating the death and disease it causes by fully implementing proven strategies. We can’t wait another 50 years. The goals the groups will propose are reachable if the nation has strong Food and Drug Administration regulation of all tobacco products, higher tobacco taxes, comprehensive smoke-free laws and well-funded tobacco prevention and cessation programs that include mass media campaigns.

What: Press conference to mark 50th anniversary of first Surgeon General’s report on smoking and health
When: 10 am ET, Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Where: National Press Club, Zenger Room, 529 14th Street NW, 13th Floor, Washington, DC
Who: Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids
Michael Terry, son of ninth U.S. Surgeon General, Luther Terry (1961-1965)
Kenneth E. Warner, Distinguished University Professor of Public Health, University of Michigan, and co-author of two new studies on the impact of tobacco control policies since 1964.
Robin Koval, President and CEO, Legacy®
Mariell Jessup, M.D. President, American Heart Association
Dick Woodruff, Vice President of Federal Relations & Strategic Alliances, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
Paul Billings, Senior Vice President, Advocacy and Education, American Lung Association
James M. Perrin, MD, FAAP, President, American Academy of Pediatrics
Cynthia Hallett, Executive Director, Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights

News media who are not able to attend in person can listen and ask questions by phone. Please email or for the access phone number.

For More Information On This Event, Contact:

Julia Cartwright