By Staff Writer
A new report from the U.S. surgeon general states that all forms of tobacco cause damage to the lungs and DNA of exposed tissue. Officials pledged to make getting smokers into substance abuse therapy to lower the rates of tobacco use a top priority for the coming years.
The report points a finger directly at tobacco companies, which have in recent years come out with products that claim to be a safer alternative to traditional cigarettes, but have proven to be just as addictive and damaging. Additionally, it states that there is no safe level of tobacco use, as even the smallest amount can lead to permanent damage.
Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius said in an accompanying statement that the costs of tobacco use are too high and that public health officials should not rest until tobacco use is ended.
“Until we end tobacco use, more people will become addicted, more people will become sick, more families will be devastated by the loss of loved ones, and the nation will continue to incur damaging medical and lost productivity costs,” she said in the statement.