Tobacco

The Washington State Department of Health's Commercial Tobacco Prevention Program (including vaping products) (CTPP) exists to:

  • Assist those who use commercial tobacco quit
  • Prevent youth and young adults from ever starting
  • Protect people from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke and vape emissions
  • Take strategic steps to eliminate tobacco-related disparities.

Reducing tobacco and nicotine use is one of our greatest opportunities to help people live longer, healthier lives. Washington state has seen significant declines in tobacco use and in increasing public awareness of harmful effects of smoking.

  • The number of adults who smoke went from around 898,000 in 2011 to 764,000 in 2017, a decrease of about 134,000.
  • The number of youth who reported smoking cigarettes in the past 30 days (eighth to 12th grade) went from around 36,000 in 2012 to 14,000 in 2018, a decrease of about 22,000.
  • More than 45,000 calls were made to the Washington State Tobacco Quitline between 2016 and 2018.
  • The percentage of youth who report being exposed to secondhand smoke in Washington homes decreased 50 percent between 2002 and 2018.

Despite this progress, tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death in Washington state and the nation. About 14 percent of adults and 5 percent of youth (10th graders) still smoke cigarettes, which results in devastating consequences to our state's health and economy.

  • One in five deaths are caused by cigarettes and secondhand smoke.
  • 104,000 youth alive today will die prematurely from smoking.
  • $2.8 billion in annual health care costs are caused by smoking.
  • $2.2 billion is lost by employers each year from lost productivity.

Learn more about the toll of tobacco in Washington (PDF)
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Additionally, the vapor industry continues to modernize its products, expanding options of nicotine addiction and contributing to the overall youth nicotine use rate. According to the Healthy Youth Survey, eighth-grade use of vapor products increased from 6 percent in 2016 to 10 percent in 2018, 10th-grade use of vapor products increased from 13 percent in 2016 to 21 percent in 2018, and 12th-grade use of vapor products increased from 20 percent in 2016 to nearly 30 percent in 2018.

Strategic plan to end tobacco and nicotine use

The Commercial Tobacco Prevention Program (including vaping products) (CTPP), in partnership with state and community-level partners, has developed a five-year strategic plan with one vision—a Washington state free of death and disease related to commercial tobacco and nicotine use.

Partners in prevention

Partners across Washington state and the nation are working to prevent tobacco and nicotine use.

State Partners

National Partners

View sources for information