CATCH My Breath Responds to Call-to-Action in New U.S. Surgeon General Report on Hazards of Youth E-Cigarette Use
December 8, 2016
The new U.S. Surgeon General’s report, E-Cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults, released today, warns E-cigarettes are much more harmful than many realize and recommends adopting evidence-based health strategies to educate young people. You can read the full Surgeon General’s report on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ website here.
The lack of existing, focused curriculum for youth E-cigarette prevention is what led one of the senior scientific editors of today’s Surgeon General’s report, Steven H. Kelder, PhD, MPH, to write the CATCH My Breath program. Kelder collaborated with other researchers at the Michael & Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living that he co-directs at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health. CATCH My Breath is distributed by the CATCH Global Foundation, a 501(c)3 public charity dedicated to improving children’s health worldwide.
Earlier this year, 26 middle schools in 5 states participated in a feasibility study of CATCH My Breath which delivered the program to 2,200 sixth- to eighth-graders. At the conclusion of the study, 7 of 8 students surveyed reported that they were less likely to use E-cigarettes because of the program.
Currently, 56 middle schools across 11 states are implementing the CATCH My Breath program. States include Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas. Several concerned organizations around the country have decided to offer CATCH My Breath free of charge to schools in their area. These include:
- Montana Middle schools (sponsored by Montana Office of Public Instruction)
- Central Texas (sponsored by the St. David’s Foundation)
- Various county health departments in North Carolina
“We’re pleased to make the Catch My Breath curriculum available to Montana middle schools,” said Denise Juneau, Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction. “We think it will be a great resource for teachers and a program that our middle school students will benefit from.”
“Because their brains are growing rapidly, youth and young adults are vulnerable to the harmful brain consequences of nicotine,” Kelder said. ”Clearly, the E-cigarette issue is different for adults than for kids. I’m fearful that the epidemic of E-cigarette use is going to cause another generation of youth to needlessly become addicted to nicotine, and they will eventually go on to become regular cigarette smokers.”
“CATCH My Breath clarified how E-cigarettes work and the chemicals in them, and it was helpful to me because I didn’t know too much about them,” said Lisa Cumings, R.N., CATCH trainer and community health liaison for Kishwaukee Hospital in DeKalb County, Illinois. “It also gave the kids a chance to explore reasons why people start using E-cigarettes in the first place and to identify other things to do besides smoke.”
E-cigarette use among American youth rose nearly 22 percent in the last year measured. Three million middle and high school students were current users of E-cigarettes in 2015 — up from 2.46 million in 2014, according to data from the 2015 National Youth Tobacco Survey, published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
CATCH My Breath is designed to help prevent the initiation of E-cigarette use among pre-teens and teens. It educates students on the health consequences of using E-cigarettes, increases their awareness of deceptive advertising campaigns and gives them the tools to resist peer pressure in a socially acceptable manner.
Interested health departments, community-based organizations, and schools nationwide can contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.catchmybreath.org for more information about the CATCH My Breath Youth E-Cigarette Prevention Program. A program sample is available free of charge at www.digitalcatch.org
Help spread the word!
NEWS ALERT: #SurgeonGeneral report discusses dangers of #Ecigs & health strategies to educate youth:goo.gl/1hylfA #CATCHMyBreath
NEWS ALERT: Just out today – E-Cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report from the @USSurgeonGeneral warns that E-cigarettes are much more harmful than many realize and recommends adopting evidence-based public health strategies to educate young people. Read more about the report from the CDC here: e-cigarettes.surgeongeneral.gov.
To learn more about how the CATCH My Breath Youth E-cigarette Prevention Program aligns with key recommendations, check out our latest blog: catchinfo.org/surgeon-generals-report-catch-my-breath
#CATCHMyBreath#SurgeonGeneral #noecigs4kids #Ecigs #Ecigarettes #MiddleSchool