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Europe reins in the smoking habit

Date:
January 5, 2011
Source:
FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology
Summary:
A study by researchers in Spain has confirmed that the anti-tobacco laws in Europe have a direct effect on the reduction in consumption and passive exposure to smoke.
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The Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases has announced its intention to release a Request for Applications (RFA) on Implementation Research on Hypertension in Low and Middle Income Countries

A study led by the Smoking Control Unit of the Catalan Institute of Oncology (ICO) has confirmed that the anti-tobacco laws in Europe have a direct effect on the reduction in consumption and passive exposure to smoke. This conclusion was reached by relating the Tobacco Eurobarometer and the Tobacco Control Scale (TCS).

A new study, published online in PLoS ONE, has confirmed the hypothesis that the greater the restrictions, the lower the consumption and passive exposure to smoke. The study was carried out in the 27 countries of the EU and relates the Eurobarometer survey on tobacco and the Tobacco Control Scale (which takes into account the main measures taken in order to control smoking at international level).

"The countries with the highest score in the TCS apply active control policies and the consumption of tobacco and the proportion of the population exposed to smoke, both at home and in the work place, is more reduced," explained Esteve Fernández Muñoz, co-author of the study and the Head of the Tobacco Control Unit of the ICO.

In countries such as the United Kingdom, Ireland, Malta and Sweden, which score higher on the TCS (that is to say, they adopt stricter controls on smoking), the consumption is "relatively low" -- 28.8% lower -- as is exposure to smoke -13.8% lower in the home and 23.4% lower in the work place.

However in the Czech Republic, Germany, Luxembourg, Greece and Austria, where there are fewer control measures, smoking is "relatively high" -- more than 30% -- as well as the exposure to smoke -- between 15% and 30% in the home and between 15% and 36% in the work place.

Progressively more measures in Spain

Fernández Muñoz pointed out that the reform of Law 28/2005 on health care measures concerning smoking, which came into force recently, "is an example of the very important progress in the control of smoking and means the abolition of the 'Spanish model' of supposed tolerance."

Although Spain scores high on the TCS, there are some aspects in which its score is low, such as the price of tobacco. He assured us that, "It is one of the countries in Europe with the cheapest prices."

"It has been demonstrated that increasing the price of tobacco is the most effective measure for controlling smoking (30 points out of 100 on the TCS scale) as compared with other action, such as, treatment to quit smoking (10 points on the TCS)," ponnted out the researcher.

The experts forecast that these measures will reduce the incidence of cardiovascular disease in the short and medium-term, as well as the incidence of cancer, mainly lung cancer, in the long-term. In Spain, passive exposure to smoke leads to between 1,200 and 3,200 deaths per year due to lung cancer and heart attacks.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Jose M. Martínez-Sánchez, Esteve Fernández, Marcela Fu, Silvano Gallus, Cristina Martínez, Xisca Sureda, Carlo La Vecchia, Luke Clancy. Smoking Behaviour, Involuntary Smoking, Attitudes towards Smoke-Free Legislations, and Tobacco Control Activities in the European Union. PLoS ONE, 2010; 5 (11): e13881 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0013881

Cite This Page:

FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology. "Europe reins in the smoking habit." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 January 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110104101338.htm>.
FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology. (2011, January 5). Europe reins in the smoking habit. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 25, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110104101338.htm
FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology. "Europe reins in the smoking habit." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110104101338.htm (accessed April 25, 2015).

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