Lung cancer death rates in California are 28 percent lower than the U.S. average, and the gap is widening each year, according to a study in Cancer Prevention Research in December 2018.
Early adoption of anti-smoking efforts in the state has led to fewer people starting to smoke, higher quit rates among young smokers, and lighter smoking among those who do smoke, compared to U.S. averages.
In the 1970s the proportion of ever-smokers among young adults in California was similar to the rest of the country, but by 2014 it was 40 percent lower. The overall rate of decline of lung cancer in California has been one-third faster than in the rest of the country, making this a big success story in the battle against one of the most deadly epidemics of our time.
This article first appeared in the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter.