New Zealand - ASH Year 10 Snapshot Survey - Dramatic youth smoking decline..

July 15, 2010 - The Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) Year 10 Snapshot Survey is a national census style survey that has been conducted annually since 1999.

Over 330,147 New Zealand 14 and 15 year old teenagers have completed the survey since 1999, which focuses on smoking by teenagers, their family and friends. The Year survey shows the number of daily smokers among the country’s Year 10 students is down to 5.6 percent from 15.6 percent in 1999. The survey has run each year since 1999, when 31.6 percent of students reported having never tried tobacco. The latest results show that 64 percent of students aged 14 and 15 have never smoked a puff.

The report’s author Dr Janine Paynter says, “We’re seeing that some of the inequalities in tobacco use are closing and it is particularly encouraging to see a decent reduction in the daily smoking rate for Pacific girls.” The daily smoking rate amongst Pacific Island girls is down to 7.2 percent from 10.5 percent
on last year’s survey and from a starting point of 23 percent in 1999.

Overall a greater proportion of girls compared to boys smoke with one in eight girls (12.5%) saying they are regular smokers (daily, weekly or monthly) compared to 9.1 percent for boys.

The highest daily smoking rate is among Maori girls at 17.9 percent (36.2 percent in 1999) The Maori boys’ daily smoking rate sits at 11.1 percent (23.6 percent in 1999)

“We are well overdue with policy moves like removing the display of tobacco in shops, as this will provide an extra boost in removing tobacco from young peoples’ lives,” said Dr Paynter.

Nearly 27 000 questionnaires were returned by schools across the country.

National Year 10 ASH Snapshot Survey, 1999-2009: Trends in Tobacco Use by Students Aged 14-15 Years

Reference: National Year 10 ASH Snapshot Survey, 1999-2009: Trends in Tobacco Use by Students Aged 14-15 Years, author Dr. Janine Paynter, On behalf of Action on Smoking and Health, Health Sponsorship Council and the Ministry of Health, 7/15/2010.

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