- Smoking was responsible for approximately 45,000 deaths and almost 600,000 potential years of life lost in Canada in 2012.
- Smokers cost the health care system $6.5 billion, with cardiovascular diseases, respiratory diseases and cancers responsible for most of the cost.
- Indirect costs were estimated at $9.5 billion, with lost production due to long-term disability being responsible for the largest proportion of indirect costs at $6.8 billion; lost production due to premature mortality cost $2.5 billion.
- There is still more to be done to support Canadians to quit and preventing others from starting. Interventions need to focus on different settings and populations, including workplaces and children and youth.
Dr. Thy Dinh is the Director of Health Economics and Policy at the Conference Board. The majority of her research falls under the Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care (CASHC). At the Conference Board, Thy has led the research on the health and economic impact of interprofessional primary care teams, the health economics of healthy active living, and the return-on-investment of expanded pharmacy services. Thy has a Master of Science degree in Epidemiology from Queen’s University and a PhD in Population Health from the University of Ottawa.
Alexandru Dobrescu is a Research Associate/Analyst for the Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care (CASHC). He provides research support and quantitative analysis to CASHC projects. Before joining the Board, Alexandru worked with a health care start-up creating technology-based smoking cessation tools capable of compiling datasets on smoking behaviour. Alexandru obtained a M.A. in economics from McGill University, where his graduate research focussed on the relationship between the consumption of alcoholic beverages and fluctuations in economic cycles.