ASH Daily News for 20 October 2016



  • Wakefield: Coffin display warns of smoking risks throughout Stoptober
  • Ireland: Women more likely to smoke than men
  • USA: Appeal from tobacco firms rejected
  • Philippines: Law on graphic health warnings takes full effect in November
  • USA: Rival tobacco tax initiatives to appear on same ballot
  • Australia: Senator threatens action over costs of tobacco case

Wakefield: Coffin display warns of smoking risks throughout Stoptober

Filled with smoking paraphernalia including a tobacco holder, 1970s psychedelic match holder, smoking cap, and cigarette packets from the 1930s, a coffin on display at Wakefield Museum highlights how smoking habits and attitudes have changed through the ages.

The exhibition, entitled ‘RIP Smoking – Let’s bury smoking this Stoptober’ also aims to remind people about the risks of the habit.

Dr Andrew Furber, Director of Public Health, said: “I hope the display reminds people of the very real risks of smoking. Stopping smoking is the single biggest thing a smoker can do to improve their health.”

Source: Wakefield Express – 19 October 2016
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Ireland: Women more likely to smoke than men

Young women are more likely to smoke than men of the same age, according to this year’s Healthy Ireland survey.

More than a fifth, 21 per cent, of women aged under 25 smoke compared with 18 per cent of men in the same age group, the national health survey found. Almost a quarter, 23% of the population smokes, with the highest rate among people aged between 25 and 34.

Dr Patrick Doorley, chairman of ASH Ireland, said he was concerned that there was no reduction in the rates of smoking in Ireland over the past year.

“The rate of daily smokers is still around 19 per cent and the combined figure to include daily and occasional smokers is still running at approximately 23 per cent. Disappointingly, this shows no decrease in the number of smokers in Ireland from last year’s survey,” he said.

Dr Doorley urged the government to continue to introduce anti-smoking measures: “There is still much to be done in the fight against tobacco. It is imperative that the government looks at every possible measure to continue that fight and encourage those who are smoking to quit and to discourage people from taking up a habit that kills nearly 6,000 of our citizens every year and costs us billions in health care in treating diseases associated with this addictive habit.”

Source: The Times – 20 October 2016 (£)
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USA: Appeal from tobacco firms rejected

The Supreme Court has rejected hearing appeals from tobacco companies which wanted to reduce payments owed to Maryland and Pennsylvania.

In 2013, a federal arbitration panel cut the annual payments R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., Philip Morris USA and others needed to pay Maryland and Pennsylvania. State Courts then ruled against this decision forcing higher payments to be made.

The Supreme Court will leave this decision in place.

Source: Legal News – 19 October 2016
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Philippines: Law on graphic health warnings takes full effect in November

The law on graphic health warnings on cigarette packs will be fully implemented starting from the 4th November this year.

This means about half the space on all cigarette packs, will bear photos showing the harmful effects of smoking. Manufacturers will also be prevented from printing descriptors such as ‘light’, ‘ultra-light’ or ‘organic’ which can mislead consumers into thinking some cigarettes are less harmful.

Source: ABS CBN News – 19 October 2016
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USA: Rival tobacco tax initiatives to appear on same ballot

Citizens in Missouri will see two rival propositions to raise the state’s tobacco tax on the ballot this November.

Constitutional Amendment 3 and Proposition A both would raise the state’s cigarette tax, currently the lowest in the country. Amendment 3 would raise tobacco tax by 15 cents a pack each year over four years, or 60 cents in total. This would bring the total tax on cigarettes to 77 cents for each pack. This money would be used to fund education and smoking cessation programmes.

The rival Proposition A, would raise the cigarette tax by 23 cents, bringing the total cigarette tax to 40 cents a pack. Proposition A’s money would go toward road and bridge maintenance.

Source: KRCG – 20 October 2016
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Australia: Senator threatens action over costs of tobacco case

A crossbench senator is threatening to take the health department to an independent tribunal if it keeps refusing to reveal how much it spent fighting tobacco giant Philip Morris over plain packaging laws.

Nick Xenophon wants to know what it cost taxpayers to defend the case, but the department insists it needs to be kept secret. Head of the Health Department Martin Bowles says the Government doesn’t want to show its hand because it’s still trying to claim costs against Philip Morris.

Source: AAP – 19 October 2016
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