UVA Student Explores Policy Options to Decrease Tobacco Use in Southwest Virginia

This past semester Healthy Appalachia Institute worked with UVA student (and recent graduate) Alyssa Smith from the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy (UVA) as she explored Virginia's current tobacco policies and recommended evidence based policy options to decrease adult tobacco use in Southwest Virginia.

"Virginia’s current tobacco control policies are relaxed, even when compared to other southern tobacco-growing states. This report attempts to strengthen current policies and programs using best practices from throughout the U.S. Virginia operate under the Dillon Rule, which means no locality may impose a law stronger than state law. Therefore, all tobacco control policies proposed herein will apply statewide. This report specifically analyzes (1) maintaining the status quo (2) increasing the tobacco excise tax (3) giving free cessation drugs to Medicaid and uninsured populations (4) a more comprehensive Clean Indoor Air Act (5) and an extension of the Tips From Former Smokers campaign. To evaluate each option I used the following criteria: cost-effectiveness, efficacy, equity, financial capability, and political feasibility."

Read her report in full