November 08, 2016
Area(s) of Interest: Advocacy
The California Medical Association (CMA) today applauded voter approval of Proposition 56, the California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act of 2016. Voters overwhelmingly passed the measure, rejecting Big Tobacco’s $70 million deceptive campaign.
Prop. 56 will increase California’s cigarette tax by $2 per pack, with an equivalent increase on products containing nicotine derived from tobacco, including e-cigarettes. In every other state that has significantly raised cigarette taxes, smoking rates have gone down, especially among children.
“This is a great day for public health in California,” said CMA Immediate Past President Steven E. Larson, M.D., MPH. “Prop. 56 will save lives, prevent kids from getting hooked on tobacco, improve access to health care, and fight cancer and other tobacco-related diseases.”
Smoking kills more than 40,000 Californians each year, and smoking-related health care costs California taxpayers $3.5 billion each year. Each year, nearly 17,000 California kids get hooked on tobacco, one-third of whom will die from tobacco-related diseases.
“Thousands upon thousands of lives have been saved today because it is proven that raising tobacco taxes significantly reduces youth smoking,” said CMA CEO and Campaign Co-Chair Dustin Corcoran. “California doctors are proud to have played a leadership role in protecting the next generation of Californians from terrible diseases like cancer and emphysema – and saving taxpayers money by reducing the costs related to these diseases.”
Prop. 56 will fund existing health programs and research into cures for cancer and other illnesses caused by smoking and tobacco products. Prop. 56 will also triple funding for California’s anti-smoking programs, and the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) said it would raise $20 million a year for public schools to enhance smoking cessation programs.
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It’s a great day for public health in CA – #Yeson56 will save lives & improve access to health care
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The California Medical Association represents the state's physicians with more than 43,000 members in all modes of practice and specialties. CMA is dedicated to the health of all patients in California. For more information, please visit cmadocs.org, and follow CMA on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.