NEW REPORT SHOWS SOUTH AFRICA MAKING PROGRESS IN LOWERING TOBACCO USE

PRETORIA, As South Africa celebrates "World No Tobacco Day" Wednesday, a new report shows the country is making strides in lowering national tobacco use.

This is based on the 3rd South Africa Demographic and Health Survey (SADHS) conducted in 2016, which provides the most recent data on smoking and tobacco-related deaths, disease and disability among the adult population aged 15 years and older. The study was conducted by Statistics South Africa in partnership with the National Department of Health and the South African Medical Research Council.

The 2016 survey shows that overall, 7.0 per cent of women (of a sample of 6,126) and 36 per cent of men (of a sample of 4,210) smoked. These figures are lower when compared with data from the SADHS 1998 when 11 per cent of women and 42 per cent of men smoked in 1998.

SADHS 2016 also indicated that while the percentage of women and men who are occasional tobacco smokers had increased slightly since 1998, the percentage who were daily smokers had dropped by 3.0 per cent for women and 7.0 per cent for men.

Similar reductions in smoking rates have been seen in schoolchildren in South Africa, with the Global Youth Tobacco Surveys (GYTS) showing a decline in smoking rates from 23 per cent in 1999 to 16.9 per cent in 2011, a 26.5 per cent reduction. This is particularly important in tobacco control because a lifelong addiction to the nicotine in cigarettes usually becomes established in teenage years.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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