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Tob Control. 2013 May;22(e1):e10-5. doi: 10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2011-050130. Epub 2012 Jan 17.

The impact of changes in tobacco control funding on healthcare expenditures in California, 2012-2016.

Author information

  • 1Institute for Health & Aging, School of Nursing, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA. wendy.max@ucsf.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study presents estimates of the impact of changes in California tobacco control funding on healthcare expenditures for 2012-2016 under four funding scenarios.

METHODS:

Smoking prevalence is projected using a cointegrated time series regression model. Smoking-attributable healthcare expenditures are estimated with econometric models that use a prevalence-based annual cost approach and an excess cost methodology.

RESULTS:

If tobacco control spending in California remains at the current level of 5 cents per pack (base case), smoking prevalence will increase from 12.2% in 2011 to 12.7% in 2016. If funding is cut in half, smoking prevalence will increase to 12.9% in 2016 and smoking-attributable healthcare expenditures will be $307 million higher over this time period than in the base case. If the tobacco tax is increased by $1.00 per pack with 20 cents per pack allocated to tobacco control, smoking prevalence will fall to 10.4% in 2016 and healthcare expenditures between 2012 and 2016 will be $3.3 billion less than in the base case. If funding is increased to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended level, smoking prevalence will fall to 10.6% in 2016 and there will be savings in healthcare expenditures of $4.7 billion compared to the base case due to the large reduction in heavy smoking prevalence.

CONCLUSIONS:

California's highly successful tobacco control program will become less effective over time because inflation is eroding the 5 cents per pack currently allocated to tobacco control activities. More aggressive action needs to be taken to reduce smoking prevalence and healthcare expenditures in the future.

KEYWORDS:

Economics; cessation; environmental tobacco smoke; health services; prevalence; public policy; second-hand smoke; taxation; taxation and price

PMID:
22253003
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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