As we mark World No Tobacco Day 2021, observed each year on May 31, the National Department of Health, the World Health Organisation (WHO), civil society organisations, medical and nursing associations in South Africa have spoken about what should be done to turn the tide on tobacco harm in South Africa.
Deputy Minister of Health, Dr Joe Phaahla, recognised that the debate on tobacco use is gaining momentum and said that the Department of Health is moving on with the legislative process. “The country is currently battling to reduce COVID-19 deaths, and working hard to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 epidemic. The relationship between COVID-19 and smoking cannot be ignored as both affect the lungs.”
As we mark this annual milestone day, we hear from the National Department of Health, the World Health Organisation (WHO), civil society organisations, medical and nursing associations on what is being done to turn the tide on tobacco harm in South Africa.
As we support the WHO in encouraging the world to #committoquit ahead of World No Tobacco Day on 31 May and beyond, join the #protectournext partners and expert guests for a series of TOBACCO CONTROL CONVERSATIONS that examine other things we need to QUIT to better protect our nation’s health.
This World Tuberculosis Day, South Africa’s health organisations forming part of the Protect our Next initiative, including the National Council Against Smoking (NCAS), the Heart and Stroke Foundation of SA and the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) are calling on more people to reach out for help to stop smoking, and for the implementation of a stronger tobacco control policy to create an enabling environment for those who want to quit. The 21-Day #Quitforlove Quit Smoking challenge starts on World Tuberculosis Day 24 March – sign up at www.protectournext.co.za/quitforlove or via the @protectournext Facebook page. Dr Sharon Nyatsanza of the National Council Against Smoking provides insights on smoking and tuberculosis in South Africa.
Protect Our Next
Tweets by National Council Against Smoking
Smoking is the single most preventable cause of death in the world. The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that in South Africa (SA) alone, smoking results in more than half of lung cancer deaths, 37% of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease deaths, and over 20% of cardiovascular deaths and tuberculosis (TB) deaths. Smoking-related TB deaths are especially prevalent in South Africa, due to a higher vulnerability of HIV-positive individuals to TB. Because it attacks the lungs, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) could be an especially serious threat to those who smoke or vape.
The new Control of Tobacco and Electronic Delivery Systems Bill will make it easier for South Africans to choose smoke-free lives, regulate the danger of e-cigarettes and decrease the impact of second-hand smoke on the majority of the population, who are non-smokers. Why is taking time to implement? Tobacco industry profits are at the expense of addicted smokers, their families, and public health. Together, the National Council Against Smoking (NCAS), the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA) and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of South Africa are steadfast in campaigning for the new Bill to be passed. It’s time for our people and our government to show leadership in implementing global best practice to curb the onslaught of big tobacco.
Zanele Mthembu, Public Health Development and Policy Consultant
Savera Kalideen, Executive Director of the National Council Against Smoking
Sharon Nyatsanza, Project and Communications Manager, National Council Against Smoking
Lorraine Govender, National Advocacy Co-Ordinator, Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA)
Professor Pamela Naidoo, CEO, The Heart and Stroke Foundation of South Africa
Dr Catherine Egbe, Specialist Scientist: Alcohol, Tobacco and other Drug Research Unit, South African Medical Research Council
Protect your family
Tips to Quit
Focus on Tobacco Control Legislation
Smoking in the spotlight
Stop smoking in the time of Coronavirus.
Smoking and lung disease
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