Tobacco Smoking in Nepal
His majesty’s Government of Nepal has made an executive order and declared the government and semi-government offices, public places, means of public transport and industries and factories to be smoke-free.
Imposition of Health Tax: Health tax of one paisa per each manufactured cigarette stick was levied in the budget for the fiscal year 1993/94. The revenue generated from such tax is for spending on activities relating to prevention and treatment of diseases caused by tobacco-smoking. This tax received popular response and was doubled in the budget for the fiscal year 1994/95.
Banning of Tobacco Smoking in Aircraft: There has been a ban on tobacco smoking on domestic flights for several years. Recently Royal Nepal Airlines has decided and implemented a ban on tobacco smoking in all flights between India and Nepal effective from February 19, 1994.
Public Awareness against Tobacco Smoking: Public awareness campaigns about the harmful effects of tobacco smoking in general and environments for creating favorable attitudes have been made by various NGOs and Government bodies on the occasion of World No Tobacco Day. Each year various activities focussing on the WHO theme are being conducted as a joint action on behalf of the ministry of health, other government offices and non-government voluntary organizations.
- EThe following policies are in the pipeline:
A National Tobacco Control Policy has been prepared with the help of WHO
Draft legislation for tobacco control has been submitted by the Nepal Heart Foundation to the Ministry of Health.
Banning of advertisement of tobacco products in the public media.
A co-ordinated SAARC effort for controlling the tobacco epidemic in the region is being initiated.
- FPilot anti-tobacco cessation programme: A pilot anti-tobacco cessation community program has been conducted by Nepal Heart Foundation and Mrigendra Samjhana Medical Trust in a village in the north-eastern part of Kathmandu valley. The intensive six month intervention campaign has shown that it is possible to bring down tobacco smoking rate by 20 percent (from 57 to 37 percent) with the help of adequately trained and motivated community workers. For the purpose of this study, Bhadrabas village has been selected. It is situated on the edge of the Kathmandu Valley, approximately 16 km north of the city centre. The main reasons for selecting this area were:
It is typical of rural hill region of Nepal.
A survey of tobacco smoking among both the young and adults was conducted in 1984 using the WHO comprehensive questionnaire in this area and information from this survey could be used as reference. l’2
This area was sensitized about the harmful effects of smoking by various activities conducted by Mrigendra Samjhana Medical Trust since 1984 so it may be possible to find effect within the short-time span available for the project.
KeywordsTobacco Smoking Tobacco Control Executive Order Comprehensive Questionnaire Public Awareness Campaign
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- 1.Pandey, M.R., Venkatramaiah, S.R., Neupane, R.P. et al. Epidemiological study of tobacco smoking behavior among young people in a rural community of the hill region of Nepal with special reference to attitude and beliefs. Community Medicine, Oxford University Press, Vol. 9, No. 2, pp. 110–120, 1987.Google Scholar