HHS Launches BeTobaccoFree.gov

The site's social media dashboard, "Say it - Share it," provides real-time updates from HHS' tobacco-related social media accounts, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Infographics, podcasts, and Tumblr.

Timing the announcement to coincide with this year's Great American Smokeout, the U.S Department of Health and Human Services launched BeTobaccoFree.gov on Nov. 15, describing it as a comprehensive website offering the "best and most up-to-date tobacco-related information from across its agencies." Information on tobacco, federal and state laws and policies, health statistics, and evidence-based methods on how to quit can be found there.

The site's social media dashboard, "Say it - Share it," provides real-time updates from HHS' tobacco-related social media accounts, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Infographics, podcasts, and Tumblr.

"Tobacco use continues to be the leading cause of premature and preventable death in the United States," said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. "BeTobaccoFree.gov builds upon the Obama administration's commitment to help tobacco users quit and prevent children from starting to use tobacco products."

"HHS is committed to using technology to help Americans lead longer healthier lives,” said Assistant Secretary for Health Dr. Howard K. Koh, M.D., MPH. "Today, as we commemorate the American Cancer Society's Great American Smokeout, the launch of BeTobaccoFree.gov demonstrates our dedication to reducing the harms from tobacco use. Regardless of age, those who stop smoking and using tobacco can substantially reduce their risk for disease."

HHS said several of its agencies are working on this issue:

  • CDC launched Tips From Former Smokers, a national education campaign featuring former smokers talking aobut their smoking-related diseases and disabilities.
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has implemented its tobacco product regulation program with the goal of reducing the impact of tobacco use on the nation's health, especially among young Americans.
  • The National Cancer Institute's free Quitpal smartphone app can help smokers trying to quit the habit.
  • The U.S. surgeon general released a report in 2012 titled "Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults" that examines the scope, health consequences, and influences causing young people to use tobacco, as well as proven strategies to prevent its use.
  • CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report on Nov. 15 reported 30 of America's 50 largest cities are now protected by laws barring smoking in all indoor areas of private workplaces, restaurants, and bars.
  • The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration released a new report Nov. 15 showing that current cigarette smoking rates among 12- to 17-year-olds fell significantly from 2002 to 2010 in 41 states.

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