Civil society urges the government to adopt an independent National Tobacco Control Policy (NTCP) to minimize reliance on international institutions.
Islamabad : Tobacco use is one of the major causes of death in the world. In Pakistan, tobacco kills more than 160,100 persons yearly. FCTC emphasizes on member countries to take a step forward and adopt long-term sustainable policies for Tobacco control. WHO and international donors are providing support to take preventive measures. Under the guidelines of WHO, FCTC member countries are responsible for policy-making for tobacco control.
Pakistan also adopts tobacco control measures by implementing laws and enforcement. Tobacco Control Cell and Ministry of NHSRC, Pakistan, is doing well for tobacco control with the help of WHO and other international donors. In this regard international donor’s role is appreciable, but, for a sustainable National Tobacco Control Policy or Strategy on the federal and provincial level, the Government must take ownership and provide funds for tobacco control to MNHSRC and Tobacco Control Cell (TCC) like other health issues.
The Focal Person and the TCC have shown great interest in Tobacco Control and following up with NTCP besides countering tobacco Industries’ interference in policy matters. Legislation and regulatory measures are essential to be imposed efficiently to control the epidemic of tobacco use. For that purpose, immediate approval and adoption of a sustainable independent National Tobacco control policy (NTCP) is the need of the hour.
Zeeshan Danish project coordinator Collation for Tobacco Control Pakistan (CTC-Pak), said we are ready to play our active role to support the Ministry of National Health Services Regulation and Coordination and Tobacco Control Cell to move forward to control tobacco use for saving the life and health of people and reduce the burden of the health budget.