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Special Issue "WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. Are Countries Fully Implementing It?"

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A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2012)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Adriana Blanco Marquizo (Website)

Advisor Tobacco Control Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization, 525 23rd Street, Washington, DC 20037, USA
Interests: tobacco control policies (health warnings, tobacco advertisement promotion and sponsorship, smoke-free environments); second hand smoke; tobacco industry; tobacco prevention; Smoking cessation, Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, Protocol on Illicit Trade of tobacco products. Trade and Tobacco)

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Tobacco epidemic is a major public health problem. It is not only one of the singular leading causes of preventable death and disability, it is also a common risk factor for the main chronic non communicable diseases (NCD) that were responsible in 2008 for 63% of the world mortality (WHO). From the almost 6 million deaths that tobacco causes every year, 600,000 occurred in non-smokers, 47% of them in women and 28% in children.

The WHO Framework Convention in Tobacco Control (FCTC), the first public health treaty negotiated under the auspices of WHO, had been in force since February 2005. As today, more than 170 countries are Parties to it, and are –therefore- legally bound by its measures. Even though new legislation had been enacted in many countries, as a whole, a small part of the world population is covered by WHO FCTC measures.

Data provided by the Global Tobacco Surveillance System shows that figures among youth (13 to 15 years old) do not forecast an improvement of the situation; furthermore girls smoking is growing and in the Region of the Americas had already outpaced boys’ consumption.

Tobacco use also imposes economic burdens on individuals and countries in direct medical costs and indirect costs from reduced productivity so is a factor that increases impoverishment of individuals, households and countries hindering social and economic development.

This special issue is open to any subject area of public health, economics and policy related to the tobacco epidemic. The listed keywords suggest just a few of the many possibilities.

Dr. Adriana Blanco Marquizo
Guest Editor

Keywords

  • tobacco smoking
  • public health
  • smoking cessation, smoking initiation
  • tobacco control policies/interventions
  • tobacco control legislation impact (health, economic)
  • bans on cigarette advertising and promotions
  • tobacco taxation
  • secondhand smoke
  • clean-indoor air laws, public smoking bans, smoke-free environments
  • Framework Convention on Tobacco Control
  • tobacco industry interference
  • economic costs of tobacco use/exposure

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Global Adult Tobacco Survey Data as a Tool to Monitor the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) Implementation: The Brazilian Case
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(7), 2520-2536; doi:10.3390/ijerph9072520
Received: 4 May 2012 / Revised: 6 July 2012 / Accepted: 12 July 2012 / Published: 23 July 2012
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (131 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) was conducted in Brazil to provide data on tobacco use in order to monitor the WHO FCTC implementation in the country. It was carried out in 2008 using an international standardized methodology. The instrument included questions [...] Read more.
The Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) was conducted in Brazil to provide data on tobacco use in order to monitor the WHO FCTC implementation in the country. It was carried out in 2008 using an international standardized methodology. The instrument included questions about tobacco use prevalence, cessation, secondhand smoke, knowledge, attitudes, media and advertising. Weighted analysis was used to obtain estimates. A total of 39,425 interviews were conducted. The prevalence of current tobacco use was 17.5%, (22.0%, men; 13.3%, women). The majority of users were smokers (17.2%) and their percentage was higher in rural areas (20.4%) than in urban areas (16.6%). About 20% of individuals reported having been exposed to tobacco smoke in public places. Over 70% of respondents said they had noticed anti-smoking information in several media and around 65% of smokers said they had considered quitting because of warning labels. About 30% of respondents had noticed cigarette advertising at selling points and 96% recognized tobacco use as a risk factor for serious diseases. Data in this report can be used as baseline for evaluation of new tobacco control approaches in Brazil, vis-à-vis WHO FCTC demand reduction measures. Full article
Open AccessArticle Success Counteracting Tobacco Company Interference in Thailand: An Example of FCTC Implementation for Low- and Middle-income Countries
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1111-1134; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041111
Received: 21 February 2012 / Revised: 17 March 2012 / Accepted: 19 March 2012 / Published: 27 March 2012
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (347 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) interfere regularly in policymaking in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The WHO Framework Convention for Tobacco Control provides mechanisms and guidance for dealing with TTC interference, but many countries still face ‘how to’ challenges of implementation. For more [...] Read more.
Transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) interfere regularly in policymaking in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The WHO Framework Convention for Tobacco Control provides mechanisms and guidance for dealing with TTC interference, but many countries still face ‘how to’ challenges of implementation. For more than two decades, Thailand’s public health community has been developing a system for identifying and counteracting strategies TTCs use to derail, delay and undermine tobacco control policymaking. Consequently, Thailand has already implemented most of the FCTC guidelines for counteracting TTC interference. In this study, our aims are to describe strategies TTCs have used in Thailand to interfere in policymaking, and to examine how the public health community in Thailand has counteracted TTC interference. We analyzed information reported by three groups with a stake in tobacco control policies: Thai tobacco control advocates, TTCs, and international tobacco control experts. To identify TTC viewpoints and strategies, we also extracted information from internal tobacco industry documents. We synthesized these data and identified six core strategies TTCs use to interfere in tobacco control policymaking: (1) doing business with ‘two faces’, (2) seeking to influence people in high places, (3) ‘buying’ advocates in grassroots organizations, (4) putting up a deceptive front, (5) intimidation, and (6) undermining controls on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. We present three case examples showing where TTCs have employed multiple interference strategies simultaneously, and showing how Thai tobacco control advocates have successfully counteracted those strategies by: (1) conducting vigilant surveillance, (2) excluding tobacco companies from policymaking, (3) restricting tobacco company sales, (4) sustaining pressure, and (5) dedicating resources to the effective enforcement of regulations. Policy implications from this study are that tobacco control advocates in LMICs may be able to develop countermeasures similar to those we identified in Thailand based on FCTC guidelines to limit TTC interference. Full article
Open AccessArticle Secondhand Tobacco Smoke Exposure and Associated Factors among College Students on Campus and in the Home: A Preliminary Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(1), 212-222; doi:10.3390/ijerph9010212
Received: 1 December 2011 / Revised: 4 January 2012 / Accepted: 11 January 2012 / Published: 16 January 2012
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (350 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
To explore the prevalence of secondhand tobacco smoke (SHS) exposure of college students at two locations, i.e., on campus and in the home, and to identify factors associated with SHS exposure at each location, a preliminary cross-sectional study was conducted on [...] Read more.
To explore the prevalence of secondhand tobacco smoke (SHS) exposure of college students at two locations, i.e., on campus and in the home, and to identify factors associated with SHS exposure at each location, a preliminary cross-sectional study was conducted on 1754 nonsmoking students from two universities in Korea. In total, 83.1% were exposed to SHS at least once a week on campus or at home; the average SHS exposure was 3.4 times per week. Specifically, 79.7% and 23.5% were exposed to SHS on campus and in the home, respectively. On campus, SHS exposure was significantly more prevalent in freshmen and sophomore students. In the home, SHS exposure was significantly more prevalent among females, those with smokers in their families, and those who rated their health as poor. SHS exposure was common among nonsmoking college students, with more than two-thirds exposed on campus. The prevalence of SHS exposure was greater on campus than in the home; the factors associated with SHS exposure were location-specific. Full article
Open AccessCommunication Implementation of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in Africa: Current Status of Legislation
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(11), 4312-4331; doi:10.3390/ijerph8114312
Received: 14 September 2011 / Revised: 17 October 2011 / Accepted: 20 October 2011 / Published: 17 November 2011
Cited by 19 | PDF Full-text (709 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Objective: To describe, as of July 2011, the status of tobacco control legislation in Africa in three key areas of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC)—(1) Protection from exposure to tobacco smoke, (2) Packaging and labelling of tobacco products, and [...] Read more.
Objective: To describe, as of July 2011, the status of tobacco control legislation in Africa in three key areas of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC)—(1) Protection from exposure to tobacco smoke, (2) Packaging and labelling of tobacco products, and (3) Tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. Methods: Review and analysis of tobacco control legislation in Africa, media reports, journal articles, tobacco industry documents and data published in the 2011 WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic. Results: Modest progress in FCTC implementation in Africa with many countries having legislation or policies on the protection from exposure to tobacco smoke, however, only a handful of countries meet the standards of the FCTC Article 8 and its Guidelines particularly with regards to designated smoking areas. Little progress on packaging and labelling of tobacco products, with few countries having legislation meeting the minimum standards of the FCTC Article 11 and its Guidelines. Mauritius is the only African country with graphic or pictorial health warnings in place and has the largest warning labels in Africa. Slightly better progress in banning tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship has been shown by African countries, although the majority of legislation falls short of the standards of the FCTC Article 13 and its Guidelines. Despite their efforts, African countries’ FCTC implementation at national level has not matched the strong regional commitment demonstrated during the FCTC treaty negotiations. Conclusion: This study highlights the need for Africa to step up efforts to adopt and implement effective tobacco control legislation that is fully compliant with the FCTC. In order to achieve this, countries should prioritise resources for capacity building for drafting strong FCTC compliant legislation, research to inform policy and boost political will, and countering the tobacco industry which is a major obstacle to FCTC implementation in Africa. Full article

Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview Smokefree Policies in Latin America and the Caribbean: Making Progress
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(5), 1954-1970; doi:10.3390/ijerph9051954
Received: 18 March 2012 / Revised: 17 April 2012 / Accepted: 19 April 2012 / Published: 21 May 2012
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (179 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
We reviewed the adoption and implementation of smokefree policies in all Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) countries. Significant progress has been achieved among LAC countries since the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) was adopted in 2005. Both national and [...] Read more.
We reviewed the adoption and implementation of smokefree policies in all Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) countries. Significant progress has been achieved among LAC countries since the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) was adopted in 2005. Both national and sub-national legislation have provided effective mechanisms to increase the fraction of the population protected from secondhand tobacco smoke. Civil society has actively promoted these policies and played a main role in enacting them and monitoring their enforcement. The tobacco industry, while continuing to oppose the approval and regulation of the laws at legislative and executive levels, has gone a step further by litigating against them in the Courts. As in the US and elsewhere, this litigation has failed to stop the legislation. Full article
Open AccessReview Effects of Tobacco Taxation and Pricing on Smoking Behavior in High Risk Populations: A Knowledge Synthesis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(11), 4118-4139; doi:10.3390/ijerph8114118
Received: 16 September 2011 / Revised: 3 October 2011 / Accepted: 19 October 2011 / Published: 26 October 2011
Cited by 37 | PDF Full-text (235 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Tobacco taxation is an essential component of a comprehensive tobacco control strategy. However, to fully realize the benefits it is vital to understand the impact of increased taxes among high-risk subpopulations. Are they influenced to the same extent as the general population? [...] Read more.
Tobacco taxation is an essential component of a comprehensive tobacco control strategy. However, to fully realize the benefits it is vital to understand the impact of increased taxes among high-risk subpopulations. Are they influenced to the same extent as the general population? Do they need additional measures to influence smoking behavior? The objectives of this study were to synthesize the evidence regarding differential effects of taxation and price on smoking in: youth, young adults, persons of low socio-economic status, with dual diagnoses, heavy/long-term smokers, and Aboriginal people. Using a better practices approach, a knowledge synthesis was conducted using a systematic review of the literature and an expert advisory panel. Experts were involved in developing the study plan, discussing findings, developing policy recommendations, and identifying priorities for future research. Most studies found that raising cigarette prices through increased taxes is a highly effective measure for reducing smoking among youth, young adults, and persons of low socioeconomic status. However, there is a striking lack of evidence about the impact of increasing cigarette prices on smoking behavior in heavy/long-term smokers, persons with a dual diagnosis and Aboriginals. Given their high prevalence of smoking, urgent attention is needed to develop effective policies for the six subpopulations reviewed. These findings will be of value to policy-makers and researchers in their efforts to improve the effectiveness of tobacco control measures, especially with subpopulations at most risk. Although specific studies are needed, tobacco taxation is a key policy measure for driving success. Full article

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