January 11, 2014 marked the 50th anniversary of the first Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health. The 1964 landmark report, released by Surgeon General Dr. Luther Terry, was the first federal government report linking smoking and ill health, including lung cancer and heart disease. This scientifically rigorous report laid the foundation for tobacco control efforts in the United States.
In the last 50 years, 31 Surgeon General’s Reports have been released, increasing our understanding of the devastating health and financial burdens caused by tobacco use. We now know that smoking causes a host of cancers and other illnesses and is still the leading preventable cause of death in the United States, killing 480,000 people each year.
In 2014, we highlight half a century of progress in tobacco control and prevention, present new data on the health consequences of tobacco use, and introduce initiatives that can potentially end the tobacco use epidemic in the United States in the 32rd Surgeon General’s Report on smoking and health, The Health Consequences of Smoking—50 Years of Progress.
As part of the commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health, the Office of the Surgeon General developed several resources to promote and share highlights from the last 50 years of tobacco control efforts. You can be a part of the effort to share information on the dangers of tobacco use. Find resources to help promote the anniversary.
The Office of the Surgeon will continue to highlight this historic anniversary throughout 2014. We also invite you to contact us at INFO2014SGR50@CDC.GOV if you want to share your plans for promoting this historic anniversary or have general questions. If you would like to receive updates related to the 2014 Surgeon Generals’ Report on Smoking and Health, send a message to the above address and put “subscribe” in the subject line
The landmark report released by the ninth Surgeon General, Dr. Luther Terry, laid the foundation for tobacco control efforts in the U.S. Through the efforts of tobacco control professionals, advocates and researchers the work has continued to move forward. Learn about the progress of tobacco control in the 50th Anniversary on Smoking and Health Video and Podcast Series, featuring interviews from key leaders in the fight against tobacco.