While the COVID-19 pandemic has elevated public health to a top priority in every country in the world, it has left many poorly resourced governments receptive to any and all aid that can provide immediate assistance to help their people.
A factoid is unreliable information repeated so often that it becomes accepted as fact. One such factoid repeatedly echoed across the globe by the tobacco industry is that tobacco tax increases worsen cigarette smuggling.
Tobacco use kills more than 8 million
people each year. Most adult smokers start smoking before the age of 20
. This implies that if one can get through adolescence without smoking
, the likelihood of being a smoker in adulthood is greatly reduced.
Legal action against British American Tobacco (BAT), one of the world’s largest tobacco firms, could see the company punished for profiting from child labor and force the industry to finally confront its treatment of vulnerable workers.
The tobacco industry’s new rhetoric that smoking is harmful and that its so-called less risky products will reduce the global tobacco epidemic, should see the industry stop opposing or fighting government efforts to reduce tobacco use. However, this is not the case.
New information published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report
shows that action taken by just 11 countries – most of them low- or middle-income – has resulted in 20 million fewer adult tobacco users in 2017 compared with 2008. Seventy percent of the world’s tobacco users live in low- and middle-income countries.
Smoking-related diseases are the major causes of premature death worldwide. Every year, six million smoking-related deaths are reported worldwide. If current smoking trends persist, 8 million deaths can be expected by 2030, of which four-fifths will occur in lower- and middle-income countries.
Trends in global consumption of cigarettes haven’t improved since the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) came into force, according to a study
published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) earlier this summer.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) decision authorizing the sale of Philip Morris International (PMI)’s heated tobacco system, IQOS, in the United States inadvertently puts a foot in the door to increase sales of new tobacco products in the developing world.
The image of a smoking toddler from Indonesia horrified the world but did little to motivate local policy makers to enact measures to protect children and youth from the harms of tobacco use. Indonesia has one of the world’s highest smoking rates where two out of three men and about 40 percent of adolescent boys smoke.
International Women’s Day on 8 March recognized and celebrated the progress women are making globally. The day also acknowledged the risks, exploitation and suffering many continue to endure.
Thailand is set to become the first Asian country to introduce standardized packaging of tobacco. On 14 November 2018, the Thai National Committee on Tobacco Control approved the Ministry of Health Regulation that requires cigarettes in Thailand to be sold in packaging stripped of the fancy, colorful and unique cigarette branding.
The numbers are in, and there’s not much to celebrate: every year, about six million people die as a result of tobacco use, including 600,000 who succumb to the effects of second-hand smoke.