Report Summary Highlights Health and Economic Effects of Smoking and Vaping, Recommendations for Reducing Use

June 2024

In 2021, Indiana had the seventh-highest vaping rate and the eighth-highest smoking rate in the U.S., factors leading to significant detrimental health and economic impacts. Reducing smoking and vaping in Indiana would not only improve Hoosier health, but would lower Medicaid and other healthcare costs, save businesses money, and increase state revenue. Evidence shows one of the most effective ways to reduce use is to increase the tax on cigarettes and e-cigarettes. 

This report summary consolidates four separate research reports commissioned by the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation and developed by experts from the University of Illinois Chicago.  

Specific findings include: 

  • Tobacco contributes to more than 11,000 Hoosier deaths per year. 
  • Indiana businesses spend $3.1 billion in smoking-related “hidden taxes” each year due to factors such as absenteeism, smoke breaks, lost productivity and more. 
  • Raising the cigarette tax by $2 per pack would not only save thousands of Hoosier lives, it would also provide an additional $356 million in annual state revenue. 
  • An estimated 45,000 current smokers would quit smoking if Indiana increased the cigarette tax by $2 per pack. 
  • E-cigarettes are the most popular form of nicotine consumption among youth. In 2022, 18% of 11th and 12th graders in Marion County reported vaping in the past month. 

The reports illustrate that raising the smoking and vaping taxes would benefit Hoosiers, leading to healthier people and businesses – and a healthier state overall.