Health Days 2011

World No Tobacco Day
"The World Convention on Tobacco Control…Guaranteeing a Tobacco-free Society” 

Each year, the World Health Organization (WHO) chooses a theme for World No-Tobacco Day, which highlights international efforts to control tobacco use.  The WHO’s theme reflects the focus for the Annual Framework Convention on tobacco control. The Ministry of Health has suggested this year’s slogan: “The World Convention on Tobacco Control…Guaranteeing a Tobacco-free Society.”  World No-tobacco Day will take place on Tuesday, 31st  January, 2011 

The guidelines presented at the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) provide the foundation for nations to implement and manage tobacco control and to focus international attention, resources and action on the global tobacco epidemic. WHO FCTC highlights the need for national-level implementation of global conventions which cover different aspects of tobacco control; these include regulation and legislation in relation to cessation, awareness-raising campaigns, curative services, economics, trade, and review of the contents of various tobacco products.

 WHO FCTC 2005 is the first international treaty geared toward controlling tobacco, and obliges its parties to take steps to curb tobacco consumption and exposure to tobacco smoke.  

Effective MOH FCTC measures to reduce the demand for tobacco  include: 
  • Enforcing bans on tobacco advertising and promotion. 
  • Prohibiting tobacco use in public places to protect people from second-hand tobacco smoke  
  • Raising public awareness about the dangers of tobacco and about advertising tricks and manipulations used by tobacco companies to increase sales.   
  • Raising the prices of tobacco products and taxing them more heavily to protect minors from smoking and to encourage smokers to quit. 
  • Periodically reviewing the contents of tobacco products.  
  • Offering stop-smoking programs to help smokers quit. 
  • Preventing the sales of tobacco products to minors. 
WHO statistics show that the tobacco-use epidemic kills nearly 6 million people each year; of this number, more than 5 million are tobacco users and ex-users, and more than 600,000 are nonsmokers exposed to second- hand smoke.  Children make up 15% of the second-hand smoke victims. Tobacco use is the biggest contributor to the epidemic of non-communicable diseases, i.e., heart attacks, strokes, cancer, lung diseases and other tobacco-related diseases. By 2030, the number of global tobacco-related deaths will reach more than 8million. Tobacco use killed 100 million people in the 20th century, and could kill up to a billion people in the 21st century.   

Official Date
May 31, 2011, corresponding to Jamadi Thani 28, 1432 H.  

World No-Tobacco Day’s 2011 Theme  
“The World Convention on Tobacco Control…Guaranteeing a Tobacco-free Society”

Targeted Categories 
  • Smokers and their families
  • Healthcare decision-makers
  • Health sector doctors, instructors and social workers     
  • Anti-smoking organizations and programs, i.e., Anti-Smoking Charitable Association
  • General public   
WHO FCTC acknowledges the need for cooperation on a national level to help low- and middle-income countries fully implement the WHO FCTC.  
The WHO FCTC campaign promotes full implementation of the treaty to enhance international cooperation to protect present and future generations from the devastating health, social, environmental and economic consequences of tobacco and exposure to second-hand smoke. The campaign also highlights the following:  
  • WHO FCTC embodies the willingness of many governments and millions of individuals to live in a tobacco-free world and their commitment to achieving this goal.      
  • Parties to the treaty shall strongly advocate full implementation of the WHO FCTC. 
  • People should demand that their governments fully comply with their obligations under the WHO FCTC.  
  • Organizations and individuals should recognize the WHO FCTC as a significant achievement in public health.  
  • The main goal of the WHO and the Conference of the Parties is to help countries to meet their obligations under the treaty, and to pass and enforce the necessary legislation. 
World No Tobacco Day’s Logo (2011):

Related Links 
World No-Tobacco Day 2011 Scientific article​
“The World Convention on Tobacco Control…Guarantee a Tobacco-Free Society"

Important Facts 
  • Tobacco use kills about 50% of tobacco users. 
    • Today, the tobacco epidemic kills more than 5 million people per year; it may kill more than 8 million by 2030 if not controlled. 
    • More than 80% of smokers, out of one billion in the world, are living in low- and middle-income countries.  
    • Tobacco use is increasing, although high- and middle-income countries are decreasing tobacco consumption through tobacco control activities.
  • Tobacco use is the main reason for death, chronic diseases and poverty.  
    • The early death of tobacco users deprives their families from financial support and increases economic burden of healthcare on national economies. 
  • Tobacco is a gradual killer. 
    • Tobacco use killed 100 million people in the 20th century, and could kill up to 1 billion in the 21st, unless we act now.    
  • Monitoring is the main key. 
    • Monitoring tobacco use can highlight problems related to tobacco use and stimulate the creation of effectively managed prevention policies. Two-thirds of the world’s people, of which four-fifths are from low and middle-income countries, are not aware of the dangers of tobacco use.    
  • Second-hand smoke exposure (SHS) is fatal. 
    • Second-hand smoke exposure is common at restaurants, offices and indoor public places. (SHS) forces non-smokers to exhale mainstream side-stream smoke released from burning cigarettes or other tobacco products.  There is no safe level of exposure to tobacco smoke. All people have a fundamental right to breathe clean air.  WHO FCTC protects non-smokers’ health and encourages smokers to stop smoking. 
    • In 2008, the number of people who had minimal smoke-free legislative protection increased from 208 to 362 million, compared to 2007. 
    • About 50% of children regularly breathe air polluted by tobacco smoke.    
    • More than 40% of children have at least one smoking parent. 
    • Second-hand smoke exposure kills more than 600,000 people each year, 28% of whom are children.  
    • Second-hand smoke exposure causes cardiovascular, respiratory and coronary artery diseases and lung cancer; it can also cause sudden infant death and low birth-weight.     
  • Tobacco users need help to quit. 
    • Studies shows that few people are aware of the dangers of tobacco. For example, studies performed in China in 2009 show that only 37% of smokers fully understand that smoking causes coronary artery disease, while only 17% of smokers acknowledge that it may lead to brain strokes.     
    • Comprehensive National Healthcare services are only provided in 17 countries or only 8.2% of people globally. 
    • 29% of low-income countries and 8% of middle-income countries don’t provide effective interventions to help tobacco users to stop smoking.  
  • Warning labels provide crucial information about tobacco use risks. 
    • Hard-hitting anti-tobacco advertising and warning labels on tobacco packages are designed to encourage tobacco users to quit and to help keep young people from starting.  Studies conducted in Brazil, Canada, Singapore and Thailand show that such warning labels increase public awareness of the negative health consequences of tobacco use.    
  • Bans on tobacco advertisement reduce the consumption of tobacco products. 
    Enforced bans on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorships reduce the consumption on tobacco products. Only 26 countries, covering 8.8% of the world’s population, enact and enforce such bans.  
  • Tobacco taxes reduce consumption.
    • Tobacco taxation is the single most effective way to control consumption of tobacco, particularly among the poor and the young. 
  • WHO response 
    WHO is committed to controlling the tobacco epidemic.  Implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) took place in 2005; since that time, it has become one of the most rapidly-embraced treaties in the history of the United Nations.  
    In 2008, the WHO developed the 6 “MPOWER” policies to control tobacco use in order to help countries meet their commitments under the WHO FCTC.  
The 6 Policies include: 
  • Monitor national tobacco use and prevention policies. 
  • Protect people from second-hand tobacco smoke. 
  • Offer tobacco users help to quit smoking. 
  • Warn the public about the dangers of tobacco use. 
  • Enforce bans on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. 
  • Raise taxes on tobacco. 
WHO selects "The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control" as the theme of World No-Tobacco Day 2011, which will take place on Tuesday, 31 May, 2011.

WHO FCTC obligations are to: 
  • Protect public health policies from commercial and other vested interests of the tobacco industry.
  • Adopt price and tax measures to reduce the demand for tobacco. 
  • Protect people from tobacco smoke. 
  • Regulate the contents of tobacco products. 
  • Regulate the packaging and labeling of tobacco products.
  • Warn people about the dangers of tobacco use. 
  • Ban tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. 
  • Offer people help to end addiction to tobacco. 
  • Control the illicit trade in tobacco products. 
  • Ban sales to and by minors. 
  • Support economically viable alternatives to tobacco growing. 
The treaty also recognizes the importance of international cooperation and of helping low- and middle-income countries to meet their treaty obligations. 
The campaign will focus on the key message that countries must fully implement the treaty to protect present and future generations from the devastating health, social, environmental and economic consequences of tobacco consumption and exposure to tobacco smoke. 
Other key messages will include:  
  • The treaty embodies the desire and commitment of scores of governments and millions of people to have a tobacco-free world. 
  • The Parties to the treaty should fulfill their obligations to fully implement the treaty.
  • Individuals should encourage and help their governments to fulfill that obligation.
  • The treaty should be appreciated by institutions and individuals alike as a landmark in the history of public health and the world's foremost tobacco-control instrument.
  • WHO and the Conference of the Parties stand ready to help countries meet their obligations under the treaty and its related guidelines.
The treaty has already proved its efficacy in the fight against tobacco. Nevertheless, as the Secretariat of the treaty explained in its recent Reports of the Parties on global progress in implementation of the Convention, "Implementation rates continue to vary substantially between different policy measures."
The World No-Tobacco Day slogan highlights the importance of the world convention on tobacco control, which gives the government and private institutions, as well as related medical and charitable organizations, the opportunity to celebrate this event through a wide range of tobacco-control advocacy activities, including: 
  • Implementing the Council of Ministers decree regarding the prevention of smoking inside government buildings.   
  • Supporting national research in tobacco control via a wide range of studies which monitor smoking rates, leading factors and prevention strategies in the Kingdom.  Health, economic and social consequences of tobacco use are also under study. 
  • Introducing the dangers of smoking via anti-tobacco awareness campaigns.  
  • Raising public awareness about tobacco’s health, economic and social consequences. 
  • Raising public awareness about the risks of second-hand smoke exposure and about the importance of providing a 100% tobacco-free environment for all.   
  • Raising women’s awareness about the dangers of tobacco use, and pointing out tobacco companies’ tricks to promote smoking among females. 
  • Encouraging the active role of Muslim scholars and imams in reminding people about the risks of tobacco use; also, urging the owners of grocery stores, supermarkets and other public outlets to stop selling cigarettes.  
Related Links: 
Last Update : 04 June 2011 04:32 PM
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