The American Heart Association greeted the report by urging those states' officials to follow suit.
"We must zero in on those areas that continue to lag despite studies that show smoke-free policies benefit public health and the local economy with lower healthcare costs," said American Heart Association CEO Nancy Brown. "Elected officials, particularly those in the South, must do more to enact comprehensive smoke-free laws and give citizens a greater opportunity to breathe clean air."
The 2010 Surgeon General's report found that there is no safe level of exposure to tobacco smoke and that any exposure can lead to immediate damage to the body's organs and DNA. More than half the nation's children over the age of 3 are exposed to second-hand smoke, according to the CDC, and almost 50,000 non-smokers die every year of heart disease or lung cancer as a result.