Policy and Advocacy
Arizona Becomes the Nation's 14th Smoke-free state
The Smoke-Free Arizona Act, the statewide smoke-free law, went into effect at midnight Monday, April 30, 2007. Arizona voters passed the law in November, 2006.
The Smoke-Free Arizona Act requires that all offices, healthcare facilities, retail stores, licensed childcare facilities, sports arenas, hotels and motels, restaurants, bars and bowling alleys are smoke-free. There are several common-sense exemptions including outdoor patios, cigar shops with a majority of revenue derived from tobacco sales and private veteran and fraternal clubs.
The Arizona Asthma Coalition, American Lung Association, American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association, volunteers and supporters statewide worked hard to educate the public about the state’s new smoke-free law.
Environmental Quality Resolution
Asthma is a chronic and potentially fatal lung disease that can be exacerbated by exposure to air pollution or other airborne irritants. The key pollutants of concern in Arizona are airborne particulates, PM10 and PM 2.5 and ground level ozone. In Arizona, 12.4% of adults have been told they had the disease.
Asthma attacks are a common cause of admission to emergency rooms and hospitals, especially for children. Therefore the Arizona Asthma Coalition supports environmental policies that safeguard public health and reduce the risk for asthma. This requires policies, laws, funding and infrastructure that promote environmental quality. We are especially concerned about protecting the health of children, who are more vulnerable than adults to the effects of pollution.
This environmental quality resolution was adopted in 2006.
Access to Care for the Uninsured
In 2016, 10.8% Arizonans population were not covered by health insurance, including over 66,000 people with asthma. With access to quality health care, asthma can be controlled. Asthmatics who are uninsured and do not have access to a system of care or medicine are more likely to have adverse health outcomes.
Often they seek expensive emergency department care when they suffer a respiratory emergency that could have been managed in a primary care provider's office. Therefore, in 2006 the Coalition adopted a policy that supports access to care for people with asthma and indeed for everyone.