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Tobacco Use in Northern Kentucky Focus of Virtual Event, New Report

Sep 29, 2020

In the last 50 years, smoking rates across the U.S. have dropped by more than half. But progress in certain places and among certain groups lags behind. Interact for Health and partners from Northern Kentucky will examine tobacco use in the region during “The State of Tobacco Use in Northern Kentucky,” a virtual event planned for 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 12. A report with Northern Kentucky data from the 2018 Greater Cincinnati Adult Tobacco Survey will be released following the event. 

The report, “Tobacco Use in Northern Kentucky,” looks at data for Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen and Pendleton counties, specifically addressing tobacco use, secondhand smoke, the community culture of tobacco use and cessation. 

The survey found that 24% of adults—upwards of 80,000 people—in the nine Northern Kentucky counties currently smoke. This continues to be higher than in the U.S. (14%) and across Greater Cincinnati (19%). The data is reflected in this graphic.  

“To protect all people from the harms of tobacco use, we must address disparities,” said O’dell Moreno Owens, M.D., M.P.H., President and CEO of Interact for Health. “We need to reach out to communities with education about tobacco in culturally appropriate ways, and provide cessation support that is tailored to an individual’s needs. At Interact for Health, we will continue to invest in efforts to reduce tobacco use in Northern Kentucky to protect residents and reduce health disparities.” 

The virtual event will also include an overview of local strategies to address tobacco use and secondhand smoke that we know work. 

A Q&A panel will round out the event with NKY leaders sharing their thoughts about the data and current efforts to address tobacco use with speakers from the Bracken County Health Department, Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce and Northern Kentucky Health Department. 

“Thousands of Northern Kentucky families have been touched by the coronavirus in recent months,” said Lynne M. Saddler, M.D., M.P.H., District Director of Health with the Northern Kentucky Health Department. “Throughout the pandemic, we’ve urged residents to stay home, wear masks and wash hands, but there’s yet another tool. People who use tobacco can be more vulnerable to respiratory illnesses, like COVID-19. If you’re looking for ways to keep yourself safe and healthy, eliminating your use of tobacco products or vaping devices is a great place to start.” 

To register for the virtual event, visit https://conta.cc/2SawPvu. The survey report will available online after the Oct. 12 event at http://www.interactforhealth.org/about-tobacco-survey. For more information about Interact for Health’s tobacco-related efforts and grant making, visit https://www.interactforhealth.org/reducing-tobacco-use/.

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