India - govt releases results of GAT Survey..

Educate your children..
October 21, 2010 - The Union (inside India they refer to the country as the Union) Minister of Health & Family Welfare, Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad has said that while livelihood of tobacco growing farmers cannot be endangered, we must work towards moving farmers and farm workers out of the tobacco industry. ‘We cannot indefinitely tolerate a public health hazard in the name of protecting livelihoods’, the Minister said after releasing the report of the first Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) – India 2010, here today.

GATS India provides information on both, tobacco smoking and use of smokeless tobacco along with varied dimensions of tobacco use including use of different tobacco products, frequency of use, age at the time of initiation and the like. Additionally the report throws light on the other aspects of tobacco use like, exposure to second-hand smoke; cessation; the economies of tobacco; exposure to media messages on tobacco use; and knowledge of health impact of tobacco use.

GATS India Highlights
· Current tobacco use in any form: 34.6% of adults; 47.9% of males and 20.3% of females
· Current tobacco smokers: 14.0% of adults: 24.3% of males and 2.9% of females
· Current cigarette smokers: 5.7% of adults: 10.3% of males and 0.8% of females.
· Current bidi smokers: 9.2% of adults: 16.0% of males and 1.9% of females.
· Current users of smokeless tobacco: 25.9% of adults: 32.9% of males and 18.4% of females.
· Among daily tobacco users, 60.2% consumed tobacco within half an hour of waking up
· Average age at initiation of tobacco use was 17.8 with 25.8% of females starting tobacco use before the age of 15
· Among minors (age 15-17), 9.6% consumed tobacco in some form and most of them were able to purchase tobacco products.
· Five in ten current smokers (46.6%) and users of smokeless tobacco (45.2%) planned to quit or at lease thought of quitting
· Among smokers and users of smokeless tobacco who visited a health care provider, 46.3% of smokers and 26.7% of users of smokeless tobacco were advised to quit by a health care provider
· About five in ten adults (52.3%) were exposed to second-hand smoke at home and 29.0% at public places(mainly in public transport and restaurants)
· About two in three adults (64.5%) noticed advertisement or promotion of tobacco products.
· Three in five current tobacco users (61.1%) noticed the health warning on tobacco packages and one in three current tobacco users (31.5%) thought of quitting tobacco because of the warning label.

Recommendations: In view of the high prevalence of tobacco use in the country, there should be a national effort to prevent any further increase in the prevalence of tobacco use, especially among the vulnerable groups such as females, youth and children. There should also be targeted programmes addressing different types of tobacco use and different user groups with special focus on cessation. There is a need to further strengthen the implementation of Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act, 2003, at national, state and sub-state levels. Establishment of a comprehensive implementation and regulatory structure at the national and state level is required.

India makes critical decision on education that will help convince children not to use tobacco. The government on Thursday, April 1st brought into force a new law that makes education free and compulsory for every child from age 6 to 14—the latest government initiative aimed at harnessing the economic potential of its young population. About a third of India's 1.2 billion people are under the age of 14, one of the highest ratios in the world. (Joining hands in the interest of children, Kapil Sibal, The Hindu, 1/31/2010)

More on recommendations see reference..

Reference: Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad releases First Global Adult Tobacco Survey, Govt Press Information Bureau, 10/19/2010.

India - some news briefs:
*India - bank doesn't employ tobacco users and tobacco users must pay more for bank loans...;
*India - govt keen to help tobacco farmers grow alternative crops..;
*Mumba, India - tobacco companies not following the law when advertizing..;
*PAPER: India community based study - why youth smoke..;
*India - high court rules in favor of tobacco companies that violated cigarettes with pictorial warnings rule..;
*India - study emphasizes the need to integrate tobacco control in medical curriculum..;
*India - more on govt ban on foreign direct investment..;
*India - Barakat Food will import and distribute Imperial's Davidoff Cigarettes..;
*India - more on ban on foreign direct investment - more insight on tobacco market..;
*India - increasing taxes on cigarettes and bidis to save lives..;
*India - cabinet decided to bar foreign direct investment in cigarette manufacturing..;
*India - captions with pictorial warnings should use local languages..;
*ndia - pictorial warning will appear on every tobacco pack sold from June 1 , 2010..;
*India - government set to ban foreign direct investment in tobacco..;
*India - despite tobacco control measure in place - tobacco sales increase..;
*India - still confusion pictorial warnings on cigarette packs..;
*Mumbai, India - NGO activists want closure of hookah bars..;
*India - gutkha and bidi companies NOT pictorial warnings..;
*India - cigarette packs with pictorial warnings are here..; *ndia - NO graphic pictorial warnings yet..;
*India - Still no pictorial warnings on cigarette packs..;
*India - pictorial warning on cigarettes and tobacco products effective May 31, 2009..;
*India - pictorial warning on cigarettes and tobacco products will be implemented from May 31 - no doubts about it..;
*India - will pictorial or graphic health warnings be implemented from May 30, 2009..;
*India - placing pictorial warnings on tobacco products delayed again..