The Impact of Smoke-Free Air Legislation and Cigarette Prices on Hospitalizations in the United States
This paper examines the impact of smoke-free air laws and cigarette prices on cancer, cardiovascular, and respiratory health outcomes among adults in the United States. To measure these effects, I employ a Poisson model with county and year fixed effects, while controlling for county demographic, economic, and environmental characteristics. Results suggest that comprehensive smoke-free air legislation leads to statistically significant declines in the number of hospitalizations for breast cancer and tuberculosis. Similarly, increased cigarette prices lead to declines in the number of hospitalizations for breast cancer, prostate cancer, coronary atherosclerosis, artery aneurysm, arterial embolism, hypertension, and tuberculosis. Subsequent analysis indicates these findings are broadly consistent across all age subgroups and model specifications. As expected, the counterfactual outcome appendicitis is unaffected by either tobacco control policy. These results indicate that smoke-free air legislation and cigarette taxation are effective methods of reducing the number of hospitalizations for cancer, cardiovascular, and respiratory conditions.