How much do Texans spend on smoking, including health care costs

El Paso News

Smoking could be costing you more than you think. 

Tobacco taxes bring revenue for the state of Texas and a new study finds, smoking affects your wallet almost as much as it does your health and even your job. 

In the U.S. alone, the economic and societal cost of smoking totals more than $300 billion a year. In Texas alone, Texans who smoke their whole life spend over a million dollars over thier lifetime, according to Wallet Hub. 

But that million doesn’t include just the purchase of tabacco alone. The average out-of-pocket cost per Texas smoker is more than $115,000 over a life time according to Wallethub.

Right now the average cost of a pack of cigarettes in the state of Texas is $5.78. And the tax for a pack of cigarettes is $1.41. However, that has not slown down sales.

“Extremely resistant to price increases or tax increases and so it generates reliable public finance streams and that’s why so many state and local governments have tabacco taxes as part of their public finance,” said Tom Fullerton an Economics Professor at UTEP. 

That $1 million that a Texan smoker spends over a lifetime includes, out of pocket costs, opportunity costs, health care costs, income loss and other costs. The average Texas smoker spends about $143,000 over a lifetime on health care costs, according to Wallet Hub. 

The income from tobacco isn’t worth the health risks it causes, according to Fadi Khasawneh the chairman of Pharmaceutical Sciences at UTEP. 

“Smoking is detramental to health it causes death it causes morbitity it causes a lot of dieseses, diabetes, hypertension, heart faliure, heart attack, strokes. so i dont think that whatever revenue is brought in i dont think its worth the life of a single Texan,” said Khasawneh. 

Since 1964, smoking-related illnesses have claimed over 20 million lives in the U.S., 2.5 million of which belonged to nonsmokers who developed diseases merely from secondhand-smoke exposure.

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