US Smoking Rate Down to Its Lowest Record

February 21, 2015

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. all-time /ˈɔlˌtaɪm/ (adj.) – going beyond present records
Example: The country’s mortality rate has reached an all-time low in 2013.

2. survey /ˈsɜr veɪ/ (n.) – an activity done to collect data from many people
Example: We used a questionnaire for the survey.

3. conduct /kənˈdʌkt/ (v.) – to plan and accomplish an activity
Example: The staff conducted a survey on the village’s residents.

4. sample /ˈsæm pəl/ (n.) – a set of people taken from a larger group to participate in a study
Example: The experiment had a sample of kids aged six to eight.

5. campaign /kæmˈpeɪn/ (n.) – a series of related activities done for a specific purpose
Example: Some environmental groups gathered for the anti-smoking campaign.


Read the text below.
The National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) revealed that the number of cigarette smokers in the United States has hit an all-time low.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducts the NHIS annually as part of its data collection programs. Interviewers from the US Census Bureau collected data through a questionnaire given to a random sample of American adults. Participants are labeled as “current cigarette smokers” if they have smoked at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime and have continued to be an active smoker.

The CDC found that the number of adult smokers in the United States dropped from 45.1 million in 2005 to 42.1 million in 2013. This is the lowest number since the government started to monitor its smoking population in 1965. Back then, 42.4% of adults in the country were smokers.

Survey findings also revealed that the number of daily smokers among the participants fell from 80.8% in 2005 to 76.9% in 2013. In the same period, the average cigarette consumption of daily smokers per day decreased from 16.7% to 14.2%. The number of nondaily smokers, on the other hand, rose from 19.2% to 23.1% in 2013 during the same period.

While the results are encouraging, CDC Office on Smoking and Health director Tim McAfee [muh ka-FEE] said that cigarette smoking rates can still be reduced. He recommends stronger implementation of anti-smoking campaigns, such as increasing cigarette prices, imposing smoking bans, and spreading advertisements that discourage cigarette use.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         How does a lower smoking rate become helpful to a country?
·         Do you think the cigarette smoking rate in the United States will continue to decrease? Why or why not?

Discussion B

·         What are the harmful effects of cigarette smoking? Please explain briefly.
·         What do you think are the effective ways to quit smoking? 

February 21, 2015