This website uses cookies. By continuing you are agreeing to our privacy policy.

Demonstrating ‘Every Cigarette Costs You Something,’ FDA’s ‘The Real Cost’ Campaign Has Stopped Almost 350,000 Kids from Smoking

(January 19, 2017) - CHICAGO

For more information please contact:

Allison MacMunn
[email protected]

Statement of Harold P. Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association, in response to the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report on the impact of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) "The Real Cost" Smoking Prevention Media Campaign:

"The FDA's 'The Real Cost' Campaign has prevented approximately 350,000 of our nation's youth from starting to smoke. By stopping our nation's youth from starting a lifetime addiction to smoking that would otherwise result in almost half of them dying prematurely from a tobacco-caused disease, 'The Real Cost' Campaign is saving lives.

"The best way to end our nation's addiction to tobacco is to prevent tobacco use before it starts. FDA's 'The Real Cost' campaign is a public health winner. Each year, an estimated 900,000 youth smoke their first cigarette, providing the 'next generation' of smokers to replace the 480,000 Americans who die each year from tobacco. Tobacco remains the leading cause of preventable death in the United States—and for every person who dies from smoking, there are 30 people living with a serious smoking-related disease, costing the United States over $175 billion a year in healthcare spending.

"The American Lung Association applauds FDA for its well-researched and evidence-based campaign. We call on the Trump Administration to support and continue 'The Real Cost' campaign – and spare another generation of our nation's youth from the death and disease caused by tobacco use."

For media interested in speaking with an expert about tobacco use and quitting tobacco contact the American Lung Association at [email protected] or 312-801-7628.


About the American Lung Association

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit:

Red button with telephone
Ask An Expert

Questions about your lung health? Need help finding healthcare? Call 1-800-LUNGUSA.

Get help
Red button of two hand prints
We need your generous support

Make a difference by delivering research, education and advocacy to those impacted by lung disease.

Button of turquoise LUNG FORCE swirl

LUNG FORCE unites women and their loved ones across the country to stand together in the fight against lung cancer.

Get involved
Join the fight for healthy lungs and healthy air.
Donate Now.