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Tobacco use in South Carolina 2017

CIGARETTE USE

  • In 2015, the prevalence of cigarette smoking among adults in South Carolina was 19.7%. Nationally, the prevalence of cigarette smoking among adults was 17.5%.
  • In 2015, 9.6% of high school students (9.4% of male high school students and 9.6% of female high school students) in South Carolina smoked cigarettes on at least one day in the past 30 days. Nationally, 10.8% of high school students smoked cigarettes on at least one day in the past 30 days.

Graph showing smoking rates in South Carolina compared to the national average

OTHER TOBACCO PRODUCT USE

  • The prevalence of smokeless tobacco use among adults in South Carolina was 3.7% in 2014.
  • In 2015, 7.2% of high school students in South Carolina used chewing tobacco, snuff or dip on at least one day in the past 30 days. Nationally, 7.3% of high school students used smokeess tobacco on at least one day in the past 30 days.
  • In 2015, 11.2% of high school students in South Carolina smoked cigars, cigarillos, or little cigars on at least one day in the past 30 days. Nationally, 10.3% of high school students smoked cigars, cigarillos or little cigars on at least one day in the past 30 days.
  • In 2015, 19.7% of high school students in South Carolina used electronic vapor products on at least one day in the past 30 days. Nationally, 24.1% of high school students used electronic vapor products.

Graph showing other tobacco product use among High School students in South Carolina

ECONOMICS OF TOBACCO USE AND TOBACCO CONTROL

  • In FY2017, South Carolina allocated $5 million in state funds to tobacco prevention, which is 9.8% of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Annual Spending Target.
  • South Carolina received an estimated $240.5 million in tobacco settlement payments and taxes in FY2017.
  • The health care costs in South Carolina, directly caused by smoking, amount to $1.9 billion annually.
  • South Carolina loses $2.35 billion in productivity each year due to smoking.

STATE TOBACCO LAWS

EXCISE TAXSouth Carolina cigarette tax

  • The state tax increased to $0.57 per pack of cigarettes in July 2010. South Carolina is ranked 45th in the United States for its cigarette tax. The national average cigarette tax is $1.71 per pack of cigarettes. The highest state cigarette tax is New York ($4.35) and the lowest state cigarette tax is Missouri ($0.17).
  • All other tobacco products are taxed 5% of the manufacturer’s price.

CLEAN INDOOR AIR ORDINANCES

  • Smoking is prohibited in all childcare facilities.
  • Smoking is restricted in all government workplaces, health care facilities, schools and recreational/cultural facilities.

YOUTH ACCESS LAWS

  • The minimum age requirement for the purchase of tobacco products is 18, and penalties exist for both minors and merchants who violate this law.
  • The sale to minors of alternative nicotine products, including electronic cigarettes, is prohibited.

CESSATION STATISTICS AND BENEFITS

  • The CDC estimates that 55.9% of adult every day smokers in South Carolina tried to quit smoking for one or more days in 2015.
  • The Affordable Care Act requires all Medicaid programs cover all tobacco cessation medications beginning January 1, 2014. However, there is not yet evidence that the South Carolina Medicaid program has complied with this requirement regarding NRT nasal spray, NRT lozenge, NRT inhaler, and Varenicline (Chantix). 
  • South Carolina’s state quitline invests $5.98 per smoker; the national average investment per smoker is $3.46.
  • South Carolina has no private insurance mandate provision for cessation.

DOWNLOAD THE SOUTH CAROLINA FACT SHEET

*last updated: May 1, 2017