Tobacco smoking is quiet common in Pakistan; use of tobacco poses serious health problem / challenges to the person directly involve in smoking, its family members and Health Authorities.
Smoking is known as Silent Killer
It is reported 100,000 (one lakh) people die every year due to smoking. Worldwide 5-6 million people die due to cigarette smoking and tobacco use out of which are 10% passive smokers.
Especially it is very common among men than women. The ratio reported as per survey published in year 2014 is 46% adult male and 6% women who smoke in Pakistan.
The Federal Ministry of Health (MOH) Government of Pakistan reported in year 2015 (2014-15) approximately 22-25 million people are smoker and 55% of house hold has at least one smoker.
Very disturbing cigarette smoking ratio of 2:1 has been reported among young boys and girls for the year as compare to men and women ratio. What we foresee if this trend persists than alarming sickness and death will be reported in coming years due to cigarette and sheesha (Huqa) smoke regularly and as habit.
During last one year from today most of the leading Pakistan daily newspaper published report and article on hazards of smoking and even Khaleej Times of UAE published an exclusive report on March 26, 2016 with alarming headline “Tobacco kills 100,000 in Pakistan every year.”
Dr. Talha Shahzad chest physician at Aga Khan University & Hospital, Karachi stated nearly 50% of smokers die prematurely which means average approximately 14 years earlier than non-smokers.
Pakistan became signatory to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control during the year 2005 in the month of February. So far no significant improvement has been observed to curb smoking during a decade. Now it is high time that all stake holders pay full attention to curb smoking at all cost.
It is need of time that Federal and Provincial assembly as well as the senate to act and pass legislation to Ban smoking in all public places in the country.
Strict compliance to curb smoking to be implemented by Federal and Provincial government, Ministry of Health and meaning ful awareness campaign to be designed and run, even involve NGO’s and celebrities such as actor, sports person and social reformers also needs to be fully involve to promote antismoking campaign.
We all have to commit our self and work with full force to implement, to fully implement NO smoking in all public places such as hotels, hospital, bus stop, railway station, airport, parks, play area and all public interaction places etc.
It is estimated worldwide one out of 10 adult killed by smoking. If this is not check right now and all possible measure not taken to educate people to avoid or stop smoking, than in next century this would kill 1 Billion people.
From last year Ministry of Health enforce to place large size of new pictorial health warning which will cover 85% of both side of cigarette pack. As reported smoker look at least 7000 the warning signs in a year. Let’s see and hope the large picture with warning sign may promote to quit and refrain from smoking as well as by their love by showing it and will ask and force with love to quit smoking.
Second very big problem emerges during last decade is sheesha and it is getting very common among young adult especially among secondary school, college and university going students.
As reported above previously smoking engage mainly 47% male adult and 6% of women, now with emerging trend and like for sheesha this involve mainly teen and young adults of either sex.
Smoking of cigarette and sheesha (Huqa) is itself poses huge health burden & social problems. Beside it another very alarming problem is increasing that is usage Gutka and Pan in all over Pakistan. This also poses a great health hazard mainly involving the throat and mouth which may also lead to increase in cancer of mouth and throat
In Pakistan it is calculated approximately 188 million cigarettes are consume per day during the year 2014. During the same year of 2014 sales of cigarette reported worth of Rupee 230 Billion (means 230 Arab Rupee cigarette sales, this term is commonly spoken in Indo-Pak)
Among South Asian countries (SARRC) Pakistan has the highest ratio of tobacco consumption.
Article written by Mahmood Hussain for Baby First Pakistan 29 April 2016.