Development of an anti-smoking policy in Novosibirsk, Russian Federation
The prevalence of smoking in Siberia is very high. Within the World Health Organization (WHO) MONICA project, we have conducted three population surveys in Novosibirsk, one in 1984–85, the second in 1988–89 and the third in 1995–96. The prevalence of smoking was 59% in men and 3% in women in the first survey, 56% in men and 4.4% in women in the second and 59% in men and 10% in women in the third. The number of smokers among children is growing steadily, and they are starting to smoke earlier (9–10 years of age). Tobacco advertising is widespread, and cheap cigarettes of bad quality are readily available. The legislation regulating the advertising and promotion of tobacco products is imperfect, and the existing legislation is not strictly respected by the local administration. Financial support for anti-smoking activities is poor, although medical staff and social workers in Novosibirsk are trying to make antismoking activity more effective.