As reported here last week, University of California San Francisco researchers Lauren Dutra and Stanton Glantz tortured data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS) to support a purported “lack of a demonstrable acceleration in the long-term rate of decline” in youth smoking after 2009. This was despite the fact the survey data showed that smoking among high school students declined from almost 16% in 2011 to 9% in 2014 – a reduction of 43% in just three years (here).
The “untortured” NYTS findings can be confirmed by charting data from another federal survey: the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), which I have used for smoking research for many years (discussed here).
Once again, I used 2010 as the anchor year for equal intervals before widespread e-cigarette use (2006-2010) and after (2010-2014, the latest year for public access of NSDUH data). I tallied smoking rates among boys and girls age 14-18 years, which is comparable to high school students in the NYTS. The definition of a current smoker is also the same in the two surveys: anyone who smoked on at least one day in the past 30.
The accompanying chart clearly illustrates that smoking declined among boys (-13%) and girls (-20%) from 2006 to 2010. However, during the next four years, the rate of decline doubled – to -31% for boys and -41% for girls.
Findings from both federal surveys are consistent: The decline in smoking among high school students accelerated as demonstrably safer (here) e-cigarette use increases.