November 16, 2010 - Back in January 2010 we reported on an extensive joint study involving 5000 people conducted by the National Board of Health, the Heart Foundation, the Lung Association and the Cancer Society, has found a dramatic decline in the number of people who smoke. Only 23 percent of the population smokes regularly now, compared to 28 percent in 2008. Health board chief consultant Jørgen Falk said the figure almost sounded ‘too good to be true’. (Denmark - in one year the number of smokers dropped from 28% to 23%..)
Studies reveal last year’s gruesome images were effective..
The health authorities have proposed to repeat the scare-campaign ‘Every cigarette is harmful’ that ran from October 2009 to January 2010, after the Danish Health Ministry publicized the positive results. An evaluation of the campaign reveals that the shocking images of damaged organs that were broadcast caused 40 percent of all smokers to consider quitting after the campaign started. Some ten percent attempted to quit, and three percent managed to quit entirely.
According to the new Cancer Plan, the Danish Health Ministry will spend six million kroner to re-run the campaign in 2011, while providing 2.5 million kroner to finance STOP-Line, a helpline for people wanting to quit smoking. “The number of smokers has gone down, and we must push forward with our endeavours in this area, regardless of whether this figure is a result of the campaign,” Bertel Haarder, Health Minister, told Berlingske Tidende newspaper.
“We know that a lot of people have been affected by the campaign, so of course it should be repeated in order to contribute to the changing views, where it is no longer cool to stand with a cigarette, but rather, loser-ish.”
Despite the successes of the campaign, there is still opposition to its re-launch.
The campaign has been accused of being a scare campaign that exaggerated the realities, as the broadcast included artificial latex models and the use of technology to produce the confrontational images. “It is a problem if public authorities make an obvious scare campaign that is factually incorrect. We should abandon these scare tactics and replace them with accurate, serious information. Then people can make their own informed decisions on how to live their lives,” Emil Ammitzbøl, spokesperson for the Liberal Alliance, told Berlingske Tidende.
The Danish Cancer Society supports the campaign’s re-launch, describing last year’s effort as “predominantly positive”, as it sparked great interest in smoking cessation. Despite its success, project leader Niels Them Kjær acknowledged that it was “very aggressive”.
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Heidi aka MissFuzzy |2010-11-11 11:21:54 They should also make posters showing a typical smoker's wrinkles compared with a non-smoker's. That one is actually rather effective since it appeals directly to ones vanity.
James4 - It's about time |2010-11-12 15:39:56
Good work. less smoke, less hospital bills. lets clean Denmark from Tobacco and Jante Law.
Reference: Controversial anti-smoking campaign to be re-launched, the Copenhagen post online, 11/10/2010.