Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Tobacco Product Use Among Middle and High School Students - United States, 2014-2017.

Research paper by Satomi S Odani, Brian S BS Armour, Israel T IT Agaku

Indexed on: 31 Aug '18Published on: 31 Aug '18Published in: MMWR. Morbidity and mortality weekly report


During the past few decades, wide disparities in tobacco product use have been documented among the largest racial/ethnic groups in the United States (1,2); however, little is known about tobacco product use among youths from racial/ethnic groups other than whites, blacks, and Hispanics. Surveillance reports typically aggregate these racial/ethnic minorities into a single category because of small sample sizes (3). To assess tobacco product use among U.S. middle and high school students from seven racial/ethnic groups (non-Hispanic whites [whites], non-Hispanic blacks [blacks], Hispanics, non-Hispanic Asians [Asians], non-Hispanic American Indian/Alaska natives [AI/ANs], non-Hispanic Native Hawaiians/Other Pacific Islanders [NHOPIs], and non-Hispanic multiracial persons [multiracial]), CDC analyzed pooled data from the 2014-2017 National Youth Tobacco Surveys (NYTS). Prevalence of ever (≥1 time in lifetime) and current (≥1 time in past 30 days) use of seven tobacco products (cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco, electronic cigarettes [e-cigarettes], hookahs, pipes, and bidis) was assessed; any tobacco product use was defined as use of one or more tobacco products, including hand-rolled cigarettes. During 2014-2017, ever-use of any tobacco product among U.S. middle and high school students was as follows: NHOPIs (45.1%), AI/ANs (43.8%), multiracial persons (38.2%), Hispanics (35.1%), blacks (32.3%), whites (32.0%), and Asians (16.3%). Current use of any tobacco product was as follows: NHOPIs (23.4%), AI/ANs (20.6%), multiracial persons (16.5%), whites (15.3%), Hispanics (14.6%), blacks (11.5%), and Asians (5.0%). Among black middle and high school students, cigars were the most common product currently used, whereas e-cigarettes were the most commonly used product for all other racial/ethnic groups. Comprehensive and sustained implementation of evidence-based, population-level tobacco control interventions could reduce prevalence and disparities in tobacco product use among U.S. youths.