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By the Numbers

This material is property of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and is used with permission.

Tobacco Use in Virginia
High school students who smoke (2015) 8.2%
High school students who use e-cigarettes (2015) 16.8%
Kids (under 18) who become new daily smokers each year 4,100
Kids exposed to secondhand smoke at home 336,000
Packs of cigarettes bought or smoked by kids each year 10.5 million
Adults in Virginia who smoke 16.5% (1,074,500)
U.S. National Data
High school smoking rate (2015) 10.8%
Male high school students who smoke cigars (2015) 14%
Adult smoking rate (2015) 15.1%

Nationwide, youth smoking has declined dramatically since the mid-1990s, but that decline appears to have slowed considerably or even stopped in recent years. 

Deaths in Virginia From Smoking
Adults who die each year from their own smoking 10,300
Kids now under 18 and alive in Virginia who will ultimately die prematurely from smoking 150,000

Smoking kills more people than alcohol, AIDS, car crashes, illegal drugs, murders, and suicides combined -- and thousands more die from other tobacco-related causes -- such as fires caused by smoking (more than 1,000 deaths/year nationwide) and smokeless tobacco use. No good estimates are currently available, however, for the number of Virginia citizens who die from these other tobacco-related causes, or for the much larger numbers who suffer from tobacco-related health problems each year without actually dying.

Smoking-Caused Monetary Costs in Virginia
Annual health care costs in Virginia directly caused by smoking $3.11 billion
Portion covered by the state Medicaid program $485.7 million
Residents' state & federal tax burden from smoking-caused government expenditures $717 per household
Smoking-caused productivity losses in Virginia $3.06 billion

Amounts do not include health costs caused by exposure to secondhand smoke, smoking-caused fires, spit tobacco use, or cigar and pipe smoking. Other non-health costs from tobacco use include residential and commercial property losses from smoking-caused fires (more than $500 million per year nationwide); extra cleaning and maintenance costs made necessary by tobacco smoke and litter (about $4+ billion nationwide for commercial establishments alone); and additional productivity losses from smoking-caused work absences, smoking breaks, and on-the-job performance declines and early termination of employment caused by smoking-caused disability or illness (dollar amount listed above is just from productive work lives shortened by smoking-caused death).


Established in 1999 by the Virginia General Assembly, the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth (VFHY) empowers Virginia’s youth to make healthy choices by promoting active, nutritious and tobacco-free living.


The Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth issues grants for programs and initiatives to reduce and prevent youth tobacco use and childhood obesity throughout the Commonwealth each year. 


The Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth's mission includes reducing and preventing youth tobacco use.


Obesity is the second leading cause of death in the United States. Over the past three decades, childhood obesity rates in America have tripled. The Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth works to reduce and prevent childhood obesity by funding and training community-based coalitions.


The Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth has provided quality regional trainings to prevention professionals throughout the state of Virginia since 2005.