The University of Washington is reporting smoking has declined in Illinois, but not all counties are seeing the same kinds of reductions in the number of people lighting up.
Studies show there were marked differences throughout the state in the numbers of people who smoke, with the rates in counties ranging from nearly 15 percent on the low end in DuPage County to nearly 28 percent in Alexander County.
Champaign County had one of the lowest rates, at just over 17 percent, and Vermilion County had one of the highest at nearly 27 percent.
The percentage of Illinoisans who smoke fell from nearly 25 percent in 1996 to just under 20 percent in 2012.
The research looked at both the overall prevalence of smoking, which included just social smokers, and daily smoking in all U.S. counties from 1996 to 2012. It found smoking has declined nationally, mostly in the last decade, but there were dramatic differences among communities, with the most significant smoking declines seen in more affluent counties and larger population centers.