‘Karnataka’s fight against tobacco yielding results’
Report by Institute of Public Health says state government’s initiatives have percolated down to the district level as well
BENGALURU: Karnataka’s initiatives to control tobacco consumption have been effective, according to a report released by the Institute of Public Health (IPH). Dr Pragati Hebbar, principal investigator of the study conducted by IPH, Bengaluru, said, “Karnataka is one of the better-performing states in tobacco control as intersectoral coordination was noticed in the state. Based on our observations, we found that the State Government’s initiatives have percolated down to the district level as well. Tobacco consumption in the state dropped from 28.2% in 2009 to 22.8% in 2016, which is significant.”
Dr Hebbar was speaking on the sidelines of the National Consultation of Tobacco Control Programme organised by IPH here on Thursday. Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao, who participated in the programme, said, “The war against tobacco is continuing. But with awareness programmes, some progress has been made. Consumption of tobacco, alcohol and poor diet result in multiple lifestyle diseases, which should be identified and treated early.”The five-year survey indicated a significant association between the implementation of policies and prevalence of tobacco use in the country.
People who saw “No Smoking” signs exhibited a decreased likelihood of consuming tobacco. However, passive smoking and advertisements related to tobacco products were linked to an increased likelihood of tobacco use (both smokeless and smoked tobacco). Though the country made significant progress in tobacco control in the past decade, tobacco-related illnesses and deaths continue to affect people across all states. The survey aimed at creating policies to further strengthen tobacco prevention and control efforts at national, state and district levels.