Statistics released this week by Health Canada reveal that more Canadians smoked in 2017 than in 2015.
The findings were published in the 2017 Canadian Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs Survey (CTADS) – a biennial general population survey of over 16,000 Canadians aged 15 and older.
Overall smoking prevalence increased to 15 percent from an all-time low of 13 percent in 2015.
There was a similar increase in e-cigarette use among the age group. However, past 30-day use remained unchanged, suggesting that many of the respondents had experimented but did not continue to vape in the long-term.
The survey highlighted the negative impact tobacco and other substance use continues to have on Canadian lives.
A press release read:
“Tobacco use is still the leading preventable cause of premature death and disease in Canada, and in 2017, approximately 4,000 Canadians lost their lives as a result of apparent opioid-related overdoses. Up-to-date data help the Government of Canada develop evidence-based policies and interventions to improve the overall health of Canadians.”
Health Canada formally regulated vaping in May this year. Peter Harder, the government’s representative in Senate, said at the time:
“These products can serve as a less harmful alternative to cigarettes and can be a much-needed option for those who have been unable to quit smoking”.