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Tobacco use remains a leading cause of preventable death and disease in the United States and in Minnesota. To address this enormous toll, the American Lung Association calls for the following actions to be taken by Minnesota’s elected officials:

  1. Prohibit the sale of all flavored tobacco products;
  2. Increase funding for prevention and cessation services; and
  3. Expand reimbursement for tobacco cessation treatment.
During the 2022 Legislative Session, the American Lung Association – as part of the Minnesotans for a Smoke-Free Generation statewide coalition of more than 50 organizations – focused on: ending the sale of all flavored tobacco products and, in partnership with the Lung Mind Alliance, expanding the types of mental health and substance use providers that can be reimbursement for providing commercial tobacco treatment and expand coverage and remove barriers to FDA-approved medications and counseling for Medical Assistance (Medicaid) and MinnesotaCare enrollees.

The Tobacco Treatment Bill (House File 3153 and Senate File 3111) - a comprehensive bill had bi-partisan support and passed through the House Preventive Health and House Health Finance and Policy Committee. Without a hearing in the Senate, the bill became part of the House Health and Human Services Omnibus bill for consideration by the Conference Committee, where the legislature was unable to find agreement on its finance bills. Overall, incredible progress was made, and we are positioned to move forward in 2023.

The Minnesota House Select Committee on Racial Justice issued extensive policy recommendations to address racial disparities in 2020, including Minnesota remove menthol and all flavored tobacco products from the marketplace. Efforts to end the sale of menthol and all flavored tobacco products continued in 2022 with legislative meetings, a virtual week of Action, and education on the disparate impact of these products. As of May 2022, 24 Minnesota communities have restricted the sale of flavored commercial tobacco products in some form, covering almost a quarter (24.5%) of Minnesotans. Ten of those cities have completely ended flavored tobacco sales.

Working together as part of the Minnesotans for a Smoke Free Generation, in 2023 the American Lung Association will continue to pursue legislation that restricts access to all flavored tobacco products –including menthol, expands reimbursement for nicotine dependency treatment services for mental health and substance use providers, and increase funding for prevention and nicotine dependency treatment services.

Minnesota Facts
Healthcare Costs Due to Smoking: $2,519,011,064
Adult Smoking Rate: 13.40%
High School Smoking Rate: 5.30%
High School Tobacco Use Rate: 28.00%
Middle School Smoking Rate: 2.40%
Smoking Attributable Deaths per Year: 5,910
Adult smoking data come from CDC's 2021 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. High school (11th grade only) smoking and tobacco use, and middle school (8th grade only) smoking rates are taken from the 2019 Minnesota Student Survey. High school tobacco use results are rounded to the nearest whole number.

Health impact information is taken from the Smoking Attributable Mortality, Morbidity and Economic Costs (SAMMEC) software. Smoking attributable deaths reflect average annual estimates for the period 2005-2009 and are calculated for persons aged 35 years and older. Smoking attributable healthcare expenditures are based on 2004 smoking attributable fractions and 2009 personal healthcare expenditure data. Deaths and expenditures should not be compared by state.

Minnesota Information

Learn more about your state specific legislation regarding efforts towards effective Tobacco Control.

State Grades Report Laws & Policies