A twenty-five year study of smokers in 195 countries has some interesting statistics. There’s also a look at Australia’s plan to drastically reduce smoking country-wide.
Four Countries Contribute to Half of Smokers Deaths
Smoking causes one in 10 deaths worldwide, a new study shows, half of them in just four countries – China, India, the US and Russia.
Despite decades of tobacco control policies, population growth has seen an increased number of smokers, it warned.
The Global Burden of Diseases report was based on smoking habits in 195 countries and territories between 1990 and 2015.
It found that nearly one billion people smoked daily in 2015 – one in four men and one in 20 women.
That was a reduction from one in three men and one in 12 women who lit up in 1990.
However, population growth meant there was an increase in the overall number of smokers, up from 870 million in 1990.
The study found some countries had succeeded in efforts to help people quit, mostly through a combination of higher taxes, warnings on packages and education programmes.
Over the 25-year period, Brazil had seen the percentage of daily smokers drop from 29% to 12% among men and from 19% to 8% among women.
But, the report said, Bangladesh, Indonesia and the Philippines saw no change from 1990 to 2015. read more at bbc…
Now, a look at Australia’s determined plan for reducing smoking.
Australia’s Plans for Smokers
Australia was the first country in the world to introduce mandatory plain packaging for tobacco products – and the UK will have followed suit by May this year. But will any country copy Australia’s plan to keep increasing taxes until a packet of cigarettes costs AUD$40 (£24)?
It’s not easy being a smoker in Australia.
Fines vary, but in some places you may be fined AUD$2,000 (£1,210) if you smoke in the wrong place. And even if you don’t, you’ll be paying more than that each year by 2020, if you smoke just one AUD$40 pack a week.
It’s already five years since Australia became the first place in the world to make plain cigarette packaging compulsory. Tobacco-advertising has long been banned, and now branding has too.
The boxes are a drab, dark brown colour (deemed the ugliest in the world by a team of Australian researchers), they carry no logos, and graphic health warnings cover most of the front of the box.
“You see this gigantic, see-and-never-forget kind of image of throat cancer – a hole in the neck, or what a stroke looks like with a brain sliced open,” Chapman explains.
But other campaigns have also tried a gentler approach, emphasising how quickly a smoker’s health starts to improve once he or she has quit.
“So smokers feel marginalised because they can’t be citizens in public spaces any more, because they’re restricted to these kind of ‘dirty spaces.'” read more at bbc.com
Global Burden of Diseases report shines the light on which countries are advancing, or not, against reducing smoking. It will help highlight which technique and educational strategies are working or need reconsideration.