In Post-'Mad Men' World, Smoking Is Blue Collar Habit

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Being poor or near-poor, uninsured, white, young, and male were each associated with higher smoking rates.

Syamlal and colleagues noted that overall smoking prevalence found in the study was well short of the Healthy People 2010 goal of 12 percent or less.

They recommended several steps that employers can take to reduce smoking among their workers, which could help them reduce absenteeism and healthcare costs. These included:

Covering tobacco-dependence treatments in employer-sponsored health plans

Establishing smoke-free workplaces

Educating employees who smoke about the value of quitting and the availability of support programs

Partnering with state and local health departments to implement policies and programs

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