A federal judge in Boston has ordered the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to create graphic health warnings for cigarette packs and related advertising by next year.
The Boston Globe reports that the judge ordered Tuesday that the agency must complete a study of the graphic warnings by April 15, submit a rule mandating the warnings for publication by Aug. 15, and have the warnings ready by March 15, 2020.
The order follows a lawsuit seeking to force the FDA to require cigarette packages to have images showing what tobacco can do to the body.
Groups behind the lawsuit say graphic warnings are most effective at preventing people from smoking and encouraging smokers to quit.
The FDA has not responded to a request for comment.